Climate scientists meeting in Berlin have been accused of "marginalising" the views of developing countries.
They are preparing to release a key report on how the world must cut carbon emissions to stem dangerous warming.
They are likely to say that if significant action isn't taken by 2030, temperatures will quickly break through the 2 degree C threshold.
But a lead author told BBC News that this focus on cutting CO2 was ignoring the development needs of the poor.
"The narrative, the language, the views of the IPCC still marginalises the developing country perspectives," Dr. Chukwumerije Okereke, from Reading University, told BBC News.
Dr. Okereke was a lead author on chapter four of the new report, dealing with sustainable development and equity.
He believes that there has been a fundamental shift in the discussions because the issue of historical responsibility for carbon emissions has been watered down by richer nations who are more concerned with the future than the past.
"The argument has been shifting away from the view that the developed countries, who have been mainly responsible for the problem, should take leadership in solving it, to this centre-ground view that we are all in it together and we all have to do our share.
"In effect, this is shifting the burden onto the developing countries and is holding them down from developing; quite frankly this is reinforcing historical patterns of injustice and domination."
In a leaked draft of their report, the IPCC authors write that cumulative emissions of carbon dioxide from 1750 to 1970 were around 900 billion tonnes. But when you measured the emissions between 1750 and 2010 they had soared to 2,000 billion tonnes of CO2.
Further emphasising the recent trend, the draft points out that between 2000 and 2010, emissions grew at 2.2% per year, compared to 1.3% over the period between 1970 and 2000.
To keep temperature rises below 2C, widely accepted as the threshold to dangerous change, carbon emissions in the atmosphere by 2100 have to be between 430 and 480 parts per million (ppm).
On current projections, the world would go through the 430ppm by 2030, so the report says that emissions cuts must happen soon.
The report indicates that the majority of future emissions growth will take place in developing countries.
This question of past and future is a big bone of contention between the parties meeting here in Berlin.
Written By: Matt McGrath
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