From the UN News Center:
The Secretary-General urged attendees to build on the momentum generated by the breakthrough in Bali, Indonesia, in last December’s landmark UN Climate Change Conference, where 187 countries agreed on the so-called “Bali Roadmap” — including bolstered action on mitigation, adaptation, technology and finance — to tackle global warming.
The Bangkok meeting is expected to lay out a work plan for the negotiations which will conclude in 2009 at a major summit in Copenhagen, Denmark. Mr. Ban has emphasized in the past that a successor pact must be ready for ratification three years before the Kyoto Protocol expires to allow countries to make it law in time.
It is also anticipated that this gathering — attended by delegates from 163 nations — will further efforts regarding emission reduction targets for developed countries.
Also speaking at the opening of the talks, the top UN climate change official pointed out that three months have already elapsed since the close of the Bali conference.
“This leaves us with around one and a half years — a very short time-frame within which to complete negotiations on one of the most complex international agreements that history has ever seen,” said Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).