China has pushed back against calls for the UN climate conference in Glasgow to aim to limit global temperature rises to 1.5C.
The country's top climate negotiator, Xie Zhenhua, said the higher rise of 2C agreed under the 2015 Paris Agreement had to remain up for discussion, reports the BBC.
"If we only focus on 1.5, we are destroying consensus and many countries would demand a reopening of the negotiations," he said.
This is a restatement of China's long-held position, but it underlines the drag it could have on other countries' calls for more ambition.
Under the Paris Agreement, countries agreed to limit temperature rises to "well below" 2C, and "pursue efforts" to restrict them to 1.5C - compared to pre-industrial times.
At the World Leaders Summit under way in Glasgow, many countries have appeared to only concentrate on the 1.5C target, even though that could mean more accelerated transitions for countries like China.
Xie said both targets were still needed.
"The world already has a consensus. We need to be realistic, pragmatic, and focus on taking concrete actions," he said.
Xie was giving his first - and probably only - press conference of COP26. He was brought back from retirement by China's President Xi Jinping to oversee the country's climate negotiations. Since Xi decided not to attend the conference himself, Xie is the closest we may get to understanding the Chinese leader's position.
In the lead up to the conference, some analysts wondered if China would use more ambitious climate change targets to stake its leadership of the non-Western world on climate and other issues.
But Xi Jinping's decision not to travel to the conference dented those hopes, and China's climate promises have not been updated for more than a year.
Asked if China was now behind the curve in terms of ambition, Xie insisted existing targets were "very ambitious".
"Our goal is to peak our emissions of CO2 by 2030 and be carbon neutral by 2060," he said. "That's a huge difference, it's already ambitious."