* Business group: Rich states must make deep emissions cuts
* Strong climate deal will help encourage green investment
By Peter Griffiths
LONDON, Sept 22 A coalition of more than 500
international companies on Tuesday urged rich countries to
commit to "immediate and deep" cuts in greenhouse gas emissions
at U.N. climate talks to help combat global warming.
The group of some of the world's biggest energy companies,
retailers and manufacturers said a failure to agree a strong new
climate deal at U.N. talks in Copenhagen in December would erode
confidence and cut investment in low-carbon technology.
In a statement issued as nations met for a climate summit at
the United Nations in New York, the coalition said economic
development will be impossible without a stable climate.
"These are difficult and challenging times for the
international business community and a poor outcome
from...Copenhagen will only make them more so," it said.
"If a sufficiently ambitious, effective and globally
equitable deal can be agreed, it will...deliver the economic
signals that companies need if they are to invest billions of
dollars in low carbon products, services, technologies and
The statement was issued by companies who back a campaign by
Britain's Prince Charles, heir to the throne and environmental
campaigner, to press for new government policies on climate
change and "to grasp the business opportunities created by
moving to a low climate-risk economy".
Members of the prince's Corporate Leaders Group on Climate
Change include Britain's largest retailer Tesco (TSCO.L), German
insurer Allianz (ALVG.DE) and Royal Dutch Shell (RDSa.L),
Europe's largest oil company by market value. Launched in 2005,
it is managed for the prince by the University of Cambridge.
Disagreements between rich and poor countries over emissions
caps and how much money emerging economies should receive to
cope with climate change have hampered preliminary talks before
the U.N. negotiations in the Danish capital.
The business group urged nations to set aside their
differences and confront climate change with the same urgent,
joint approach they took during the economic crisis.
"Developed countries need to take on immediate and deep
emission reduction commitments that are much higher than the
global average," the statement added.
(Editing by Jon Boyle)