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UNFCCC Executive Secretary Holds Press Briefing on Copenhagen Outcome

20 January 2010: Yvo de Boer, UNFCCC Executive Secretary, gave a press briefing in Bonn, Germany, for the first time since the conclusion of the Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December 2009.

He said that the fact that Copenhagen did not deliver a full agreement to address climate change “just makes the task more urgent.” Highlighting three key outcomes from Copenhagen, de Boer noted that: it has raised climate change to the highest level of government; the Copenhagen Accord reflects a political consensus on the long-term, global response to climate change; and the negotiations brought an almost full set of decisions to implement rapid climate action near to completion. He observed that although “Copenhagen did not produce the final cake, it left countries with all the right ingredients to bake a new one in Mexico.”

He underlined that the Copenhagen Accord represents a “political letter of intent” that: offers to reduce national emissions goals and sets global temperature rises to two degrees Celsius; defines the amount of short- and long-term financing needed to implement climate change action in developing countries; and sets 2015 as a review year to check if global actions need to be more urgent. De Boer concluded by noting that countries were now in a cooling off period, which gives them the time needed to resume their discussions with each other. [The Press Briefing]