The rise of global greenhouse gas emissions has been held back by recession, according to researchers.
Experts at the Economic and Social Research Council's (ESRC) found that global emissions will be 9 per cent below the expected mark in 2012 due to the credit crunch.
But the report from the centre, hosted by the University of Leeds and the London School of Economics (LSE), warned that the lower levels will only temporarily delay the "dangerous" moment when the impacts of climate change will be much more severe, reports the Telegraph.
Professor Andy Gouldson, co-author of the report at the University of Leeds, said: "Our results show that although the downturn is likely to cause a measurable decrease in global emissions, it will only delay temporarily the relentless rise in emissions that we have seen over the past few decades.
"If we return to 'business as usual' emissions after the economic crisis is over, the profound and severe risks of climate change impacts will continue to grow.
"So the global downturn does not remove the urgent need for a strong agreement to be reached at the United Nations climate change conference in Copenhagen in December."