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20 Oct 2009: Copenhagen Talks Will Yield
Framework But No Treaty, UN Official Says

The U.N.'s top climate official predicts that the Copenhagen talks in December may yield a political framework for future greenhouse gas reductions, but will not produce an international treaty to replace the Kyoto protocol. In an interview with the Financial Times, Yvo de Boer, the head of the U.N. Climate Change Secretariat, said there does not appear to be enough time to work out the details of a binding treaty that could be signed in Copenhagen. Rather, he said the conference needs to deliver an “overarching decision” that sets individual targets for industrialized countries, and determines what level of emissions reductions major developing countries are willing to make by 2020. Global leaders should also be ready to set a deadline for a treaty that works out those details. “If you look at the limited amount of time that remains to Copenhagen, we have to focus on what can realistically be done and how that can realistically be framed,” de Boer said. He also urged President Obama to attend the conference in Copenhagen, saying “we need a push at the highest possible political level” to reach a successful accord.


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