Yvo de BoerPoliticians would not be politicians if they did not wriggle out over promises they have made in the past. Ask them a straight question and you never get a straight answer. If they give a firm commitment, often they renegade on it.

So should we really be surprised that the UN’s chief negotiator on climate change, Yvo de Boer, has accused Europe’s politicians of shifting the goalposts over how much of the bill for reducing emissions will fall on developed and developing countries.

At the Bali Climate Change in December 2007 the EU agreed to bankroll clean technology in developing countries if they agreed to take appropriate actions to curb emissions growth.

Now the EU has shifted its position to say it wants developing countries to produce plans to cut emissions across their entire economy before they will get financial assistance from the EU.

de Boer, told BBC News: “Quite frankly the language from (EU) ministers re-writes some of the fundamental agreements we made in Bali. I don’t think it’s constructive to enter into a negotiation by trying to change the fundamental principles on which you’ve just agreed the negotiation will be based.”

The spat between the UN and EU comes just six weeks before the start of negotiations that will lay the groundwork for international talks in December.  The rift was said to be very much in evidence earlier this week at the Carbon Market Insights conference where there was said to be a “distinctly frosty atmosphere” between the UN and EU.

The growing diplomatic tension will only surely grow as Copenhagen gets closer. And if Copenhagen succeeds, you know the politicians will be the first to seek the credit, and if it fails they will blame someone else.