United States President Barack Obama has invited 16 of the world's leading economic powers to a meeting on climate change in Washington at the end of April.
The intention is to bring together countries from the developed and developing world to generate what Mr Obama's administration calls "political leadership on climate and clean energy".
It will focus on increasing the supply of clean energy and cutting greenhouse gas emissions, the White House said.
The forum - which will bring together representatives of the 16 major economies and the UN secretary general - is designed to help broker a UN agreement on global warming, the White House said in a statement.
It aims to create dialogue between nations and "help generate the political leadership necessary to achieve a successful outcome at the UN climate change negotiations that will convene this December in Copenhagen", the statement said.
That pact that would take over from the Kyoto Protocol - an international agreement setting targets for industrialised countries to cut their greenhouse gas emissions.