UN-backed climate change talks gaining traction ahead of global conference

Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

12 August 2009 – Governments are making headway in negotiations aimed at reaching an ambitious and effective global greenhouse gas reduction treaty, the top United Nations climate change official said today, as the third day of the latest round of informal talks kicked off in Bonn, Germany.

Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), said that the five-day meeting is seeing progress in efforts to narrow down the number of options contained in the 200 pages of the main negotiating text.

The document is expected to serve as the basis for negotiations for a successor pact to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, which is to be agreed in December at the UN climate change conference in Copenhagen.

Mr. de Boer said that so far this week progress has been made in the areas of providing technology and finance to help developing countries reduce harmful emissions and adapt to the inevitable effects of climate change.

He added that governments were looking at how mid-term emission reduction pledges could be translated into legally binding targets as a key component of the Copenhagen deal.

Mr. de Boer also underscored the importance of harnessing the political momentum gained from the Group of Eight (G8) nations Summit and the Major Economies Forum meeting last month, so that Copenhagen can produce a strong, workable agreed outcome.

The Bonn meeting is scheduled to end on Friday and is followed by sessions in Bangkok from 28 September to 9 October and Barcelona from 2 to 6 November.

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