A leaked draft UNFFC document dated 15th December shows that current committments of emissions reductions "remain on an unsustainable pathway that could lead to concentrations equal or above 550ppm with the related temperature raise around 3 degrees C.".
The document was first reported on by by the MediaPart French press outlet as well as the tv/radio show Democracy Now.
The document (PDF) can be downloaded from 350.org and other sites
While the fact that commitments have not matched the scientific targets is well known, the acknowledgement from the United Nations signifies that the conference secretariat is well aware that, even by its own accounting, the deal likely to be signed tomorrow will not accomplish the stated goal of even the most powerful negotiating countries (hold to 2 degree rise), let alone the goals of the most impacted countries (well below 1.5 degree rise).
So this is the result of two years of negotiation since Bali? What have our negotiators been up to all this time?
For an MIT software model of where current commitments will take us see the Climate Interactive Scoreboard. This model says with existing pledges we are more likely to result in a temp increase of 3.9 C, not a mere 3 C.
Concerned? You can communicate directly to Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Climate Minister Penny Wong in Copenhagen through Fax or email via the Getup! Campaign page Kevin's Chance to Lead. Tell our leaders to put forward their most ambitious targets and real financial support for developing countries by sending your urgent fax straight to Kevin Rudd and Penny Wong in Denmark.
Don't leave it to tomorrow, do it now.
My own email statement
Dear Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Climate Minister Penny Wong,
I have been following scientific reports on climate change since 2004, so I am aware what climate scientists say we need to take action to avoid dangerous climate change.
I was proud of the leadership of the newly elected Rudd Government in signing the Kyoto Protocol in 2007, and the pivotal role Penny Wong played in last minute negotiations that brokered the Bali roadmap.
I am also proud of my union, the NTEU for adopting a climate change policy that reiterates the policy response that scientists have said we need for effective action.
Copenhagen is a unique pivotal moment in history, and I want to be proud of Australia as a leader on climate policy by placing the most ambitious targets and real financial support for developing countries on the negotiation table.
I ask for you to table a 40% emission cut on 1990 levels by 2020. If you can't do this, then table the Governments stated maximum of 25% on 2000 levels, even though this is insufficient according to the reductions needed and demanded by the science.
I would also like Australia to adopt the 350ppm target, and 1.5 degree temp rise as the level for a safe climate, and support our island nation neighbours and many of the poorer developing countries. I believe over 100 countries support the Tuvalu proposal and ask why Australia is condemning our neighbour states to oblivion through sea level rise by targets to low.
I also want to see a substantial contribution to long term aid for developing countries. This should be new Money. Hilary Clinton announcement of $100billion per year by 2020 is a significant concession.
Australia is the biggest per capita polluter in the world, and we need to take leadership on emission reduction mitigation and funding adaption measures in the third world.
Please act on climate ambitiously, fairly and with justice
For your children and my children.
Takver is a citizen journalist from Melbourne who has been writing on Climate Change issues and protests including Rising Sea Level, Ocean acidification, Environmental and social Impacts since 2004.