The UN’s top climate official says that global emissions reductions targets recommended by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) were unlikely to be delivered at the Copenhagen climate talks in December. But he still believes that agreeing to targets after the summit could hold some value.

“I don’t think in Copenhagen we’re going to get an agreement on an 80% global emission reduction [by 2050] and I think that, at the end of day, is what we need,” said Yvo de Boer, executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). “What I would like to see come out of Copenhagen is a robust architecture to address climate change that is attractive to as many countries as possible so that we have a solid foundation to build on moving forward from there.”

Since the developed world is responsible for most of the world’s GHG emissions — and for most of the climate change that has already occurred — de Boer had hoped that industrialized countries would commit to the deep cuts that would demonstrate good faith to poorer countries. The EU appeared willing to take that step, but countries like Japan, Canada, and the US would not agree to strict 2020 reductions. Another problem: the original 30-page draft negotiating text now weighs in at more than 200 pages, so months of haggling lie ahead. (Source: Business Green,

Contact: Yvo de Boer, Secretary, UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, +49 (228) 815-1000, secretariat@unfccc.int, www.unfccc.int