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Results from the Durban climate talks show that businesses should start preparing in 2012 for a low-carbon economy, according to the former executive secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Yvo de Boer said that Durban sent a strong message to business that the world's governments are serious about tackling climate change. He said it is now apparent that market-based mechanisms such as carbon trading will continue and that there will be clear reporting guidelines on greenhouse gas emissions.
At Durban, negotiators agreed a second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol, to run from 2013 through 2017, and bound themselves to agree in 2015 on a deal to force them to cut emissions by 2020.
De Boer said a legally binding agreement would help business by providing greater certainty and a level playing field. He said companies will play a key role in combating global warming, including through the green climate fund, which is set to channel $100bn a year from rich to poor countries by 2020. The Durban outcomes confirmed that the fund will be able to help pay for private sector initiatives, he said.
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