A “dangerous climate change” can only be prevented if a post-Kyoto regime is agreed to by the end of 2009 which allows for a global halving of the greenhouse gas emissions until 2050. If thisfails, then in the next decades temperature increases can be expected that will lead to fundamental and irreversible changes in the Earth’s system. This could undermine global human development, overtax social coping capacities especially in developing countries and endanger the stability of the international system. Already, climate change endangers achieving the Millennium Development Goals. It requires an enormous international exertion to utilise the very tight time period until 2009. Development politics must quickly enter uncharted conceptual territory and must link the struggle against poverty with suitable strategies for adaptation to climate change. In the climate change negotiations until 2009 it will become clear if a controllable global warming of up to approximately 2°C can be assumed or if it will come to an unimpeded climate change with the corresponding fundamental consequences. For Germany and the EU there is now the chance of gaining decision-making power in both development cooperation and in energy policy on a global political as well as economic level by being the pioneers that lead the way.