Bonn talks highlight rifts between rich and poor states

A fresh round of climate talks is underway in the German city of Bonn but they show little signs of breaking the deeply ingrained deadlock that became apparent in Copenhagen last year.

The talks, attended by negotiators from 182 countries, follow on from December’s COP15 and seek to pave the way for real progress at COP16, to be held in Cancún, Mexico at the end of the year.

But early signs were not promising, with clear divisions between the industrialised West and the developing countries.

Yvo de Boer, UNFCCC Executive Secretary, warned that while the Copenhagen meeting might have postponed progress on global efforts to tackle the problem, it had not postponed the impacts of climate change itself.

The deadline to agree an effective international response to climate change at Copenhagen was set because governments, when launching negotiations in Bali in 2007, recognised the scientific warning on climate for what it was: a siren call to act now, or face the worst, he added.

Mr de Boer claimed that climate negotiations over the next two weeks will be on track if they keep focused on a common way forward towards a concrete and realistic goal in Cancún.

“I encourage governments to now develop greater clarity on the future of the Kyoto Protocol, since this issue cannot be left unattended until Cancún,” said Mr de Boer.

Sam Bond

Action inspires action. Stay ahead of the curve with sustainability and energy newsletters from edie