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Home >> World
UPDATED: 08:20, June 09, 2006
Beckett appoints new climate change representative
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British Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett on Thursday announced the appointment of John Ashton as a Special Representative for Climate Change.

Ashton will support Ministers in delivering a step-change in the international response to climate change -- a new strategic priority for the Foreign Office.

"I am very pleased that John has agreed to take on this new role which is a perfect fit for his experience, expertise and enthusiasm. He has an international track record as an effective negotiator -- something I saw at first hand in Johannesburg and other UN climate change talks," Beckett said in a statement.

"Climate change remains the biggest long-term challenge this planet faces today. Its uniquely global danger demands an urgent and sustained international response in which the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has a key role. And I am confident that John with his trademark energy will enhance our work." Beckett added.

According to the statement, Ashton will join the FCO in the week beginning on June 19 on secondment from Third Generation Environmentalism (E3G), an independent not-for-profit organization that works in the public interest to accelerate the global transition to sustainable development. He is a co-founder of E3G and has been its Chief Executive since its inception in 2004.

Ashton's appointment is at Director General level. He will have the personal title of Ambassador and report directly to the Foreign Secretary.

And he will engage with major developed and developing countries, including China, India, Brazil, Mexico and South Africa, to help drive forward the Gleneagles Dialogue on climate change, clean energy and sustainable development, agreed at last year's G8 Summit.

Source: Xinhua

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