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Developing countries meet in Siem Reap for climate change talks

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Three days of discussions hoped to devise ways for poor nations to contribute to global efforts to reduce carbon emissions.

Photo by:
KYLE SHERER

Hussein Shedaiwa, climate change delegate from Yemen.

REPRESENTATIVES from developing nations gathered this week in Siem Reap to discuss ways of reducing carbon emissions, an Environment Ministry official said, as the three-day talks on "issues of common interest" wrapped up.

"We can't commit to stopping emissions," said Tin Ponlok, an official with the ministry.

"But we can take part in global projects to reduce emissions," he added, saying, however, that developing countries face greater challenges in

combating climate change.

"Developing countries produce more emissions because we use older technology," he said.

To reduce emissions, Tin Ponlok said that developing countries require a "technology transfer" from the developed world.

Tin Ponlok acknowledged that rapid industrialisation in developing countries is damaging the environment, but said it is a necessary evil required to raise the living standards of the impoverished.

He noted that under the United Nations framework, developing countries are not required to reduce carbon emissions unless supported by countries in the first world.

"The developed world also needs to provide fair incentives for conservation," he said.

The conference, held at Siem Reap's Allson Angkor Paradise Hotel, was attended by 46 delegates and was part of the international Climate Change Negotiations Process, which will reconvene in Copenhagen this December.

Experts say climate change is particularly damaging to poor, rural countries like Cambodia, where the much of the population relies on agriculture for its livelihood.

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