But many say compromise lacks substance
Negotiators have agreed a text to be approved by world leaders meeting this week in Rio to consider the worsening state of the global environment.
The Rio+20 gathering comes 20 years after the Earth Summit.
The text calls for "urgent action" on unsustainable production and consumption, but it gives no detail, or a timetable, on how this can be achieved, and no clear direction as to how the world economy can be put on a greener path.
It reaffirms many past commitments, such as phasing out "harmful and inefficient" fossil fuel subsidies.
Friends of the Earth's director of policy and campaigns, Craig Bennett, said: "This damp squib of a draft negotiating text makes it clear the Rio talks lack the firepower needed to solve the global emergency we're facing.
"Developed countries have repeatedly failed to live safely within our planet's limits - now they must wake up to the fact that until we fix our broken economic system we're just papering over the ever-widening cracks."
More than 100 world leaders are expected in Rio from Wednesday to attend the summit.
They include new French President Francois Hollande, but not US President Barack Obama, or British Prime Minister David Cameron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who are all sending ministers in their places.
It comes just days after a letter by a group of world academics called for the meeting to "Seize the moment"
Governments must seize the "historic opportunity" of the Rio+20 summit to put the world on a new sustainable course, said a panel of Nobel laureates, ministers and scientists.
Society is "on the edge of a threshold of a future with unprecedented environmental risks", they conclude.
In the negotiations, Brazil's plan to sign off a new package by Monday night failed, with rows on several issues.
The Rio+20 meeting comes 20 years after the Earth Summit, and was called with the aim of putting humanity on a more sustainable pathway, alleviating poverty while preserving the environment.
The panel's declaration made clear that as far as they were concerned, the challenge is immediate and significant.
"The combined effects of climate change, resource scarcity, loss of biodiversity and ecosystem resilience at a time of increased demand, poses a real threat to humanity's welfare," they write.
"There is an unacceptable risk that human pressures on the planet, should they continue on a business as usual trajectory, will trigger abrupt and irreversible changes with catastrophic outcomes for human societies and life as we know it."
The group of more than 30 signatories includes Nobel laureates such as Carlo Rubbia, Walter Kohn, Douglas Osheroff and Yuan Tseh Lee, as well as politicians including Brazil's Environment minister Izabella Teixeira and Finland's recently ex-President Tarja Halonen.
Gro Harlem Brundtland, the former Norwegian prime minister and World Health Organization chief who led the Brundtland Commission on sustainable development in 1987, was also on the panel.
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