UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (L) South African President Jacob Zuma (C) and South African foreign minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane attend the opening of the ministerial stage of a two-week 194-nation conference on climate change in Durban. (AP Photo/Schalk van Zuydam)
Countries are moving towards 2015 deadline for a new climate treaty after the ministers failed to break the impasse over the nature of new climate treaty.
"A process needs to be established for which 2013-2015 review could provide valuable inputs," South African president Jacob Zuma said at the start of high level segment of Durban climate conference. He asked the countries to decide the specific time-frame to conclude the work on pending issues at Durban.
The formulation being talked at Durban is to discuss the new climate treaty after review of scientific data on present and future impact of climate change is done by United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC). The panel's fifth assessment reports are expected in 2013 and 2014.
"We should lay foundation of climate arrangement for long term at Durban," said United States' chief climate negotiator Todd Stern, while backing the European Union's proposal for setting a road map to have a climate agreement by 2015.
China and India also agree on the ground that there can be review of performance of various groups of countries when IPCC's reports and assessment of developed country actions are available.
"We should not confuse the matter of review with the questioning of legally binding agreement," Indian environment minister Jayanthi Natarajan said.
While most nations agree for 2015 deadline, there has been no consensus on the nature of Green Climate Fund, adaptation committee for the least developed nations, mechanism for developing clean technologies and equity issues.
The move is aimed to break the logjam at Durban and push the goalpost to 2015 so that rich nations may be in a position to meet their financial commitment of US$ 100 billion for climate mitigation and adaptation. As of now, Europe, the major climate funder, is suffering its worst economic crises. It is for the second time the goalpost on climate deal has been shifted.