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The current financial crisis has tended to sap the momentum of industrialized countries’ policy steps to address climate change. Given the threat of runaway global warming, adopting a “minimax-regret” strategy is the best policy response: aim to stabilize GHG levels close to present levels. This requires accelerating R&D expenditures targeting technologies that radically reduce marginal costs of GHG emissions control. Making severe emissions cuts less burdensome would reinforce efforts to achieve that goal by “cap-and-trade” programmes and carbon taxes. The global community should commit itself to making major, coordinated investments in a diversified portfolio of climate change R&D, and to providing global access to the emerging technologies.