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NEW YORK (AP) -- Money on the table - perhaps $10 billion a year or more - could help close a deal in Denmark next month and keep climate talks moving toward a new global treaty in 2010. But if poorer nations see too little offered up front, the U.N. conference could end in discord.
The money would help developing countries cope with ocean flooding, drought and other effects of climate change, while also helping them cut down on emissions of global-warming gases. The funds might eventually come from new sources, such as a tax on airline flights, but negotiators for now are seeking quicker infusions.
"Rich countries must put at least $10 billion a year on the table to kick-start immediate action up to 2012," the U.N. climate chief, Yvo de Boer, told reporters last week in a preview of the two-week conference opening next Monday in Copenhagen.