Success is still possible
In the final weeks leading to Copenhagen, an ambitious and successful outcome is absolutely on the table, and is something that attendees at the conference can and must strive for.
Of course we would have preferred Copenhagen to agree on a comprehensive Treaty. But a strong, binding political agreement with clear commitments from all leaders will be a huge step forward, and keep us on track for a binding legal agreement next year.
So our Prime Minister Gordon Brown will go to Copenhagen to push for a comprehensive deal that covers all the major issues: including specific targets for economy-wide emissions reductions from developed countries, significant action from developing countries to slow their emissions growth, and finance for the poorest countries. All of this in itself constitutes a significant challenge.
The Copenhagen agreement needs to be the catalyst. We need immediate actions, like those in the UK and EU, to reduce emissions, adopt low carbon growth plans, and help other countries. We can't wait years for final legal conclusion and ratification.
So there is no lowering of ambition -- we are very clear about our goals. We are also encouraged by how much has been done on climate change globally in the last year alone. The politics are finally catching up with the science for the first time since politicians began debating climate change. If leaders rise to the challenge, Copenhagen can still represent a significant success.
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