EU seeks OK for climate package by mid-2009

LJUBLJANA (Reuters) - EU President Slovenia said on Monday it would use its stewardship of EU business over the next six months to try and steer the bloc’s proposed package of energy and climate change reforms towards approval by mid-2009.

Prime Minister Janez Jansa told a news conference he would aim by the end of the Slovene presidency on June 30 to have had a first reading in the European Parliament of proposals due to be unveiled later this month intended to spur wider use of renewable energies and include targets for CO2 reductions.

“Europe must show that we are serious about climate change,” Jansa said of new rules due to be part of a raft of post-2012 proposals covering issues including national emissions targets and clean energy subsidies.

The European Union says it is a leader on climate change and is alone in pushing for tough, unilateral emissions-cutting targets, saying it will cut greenhouse gases by a fifth by 2020 versus 1990 levels.

Reporting by William Schomberg; editing by Mark John