17 Dec 2009

Kiribati says Copenhagen climate deal would be miracle

7:09 pm on 17 December 2009

Kiribati says it would now take a miracle for the Copenhagen conference to produce a legally binding agreement on climate change.

Kiribati is one of the small island states that's been pushing for an agreement that would limit global temperatures rises to less than 1.5 degrees.

Tesse Lambourne, who's also the country's foreign secretary, says the bottom line for Kiribati is to secure an agreement that will ensure its survival.

She says the commitments developed countries are offering are not enough to achieve that.

"From Copenhagen, what we want is a deal that will guarantee the survival of our people. If we can't get a legally binding agreement here, an agreement that our leaders will agree to in Copenhagen we will need to set the timeline for achieving that."

Australia has been accused of bullying Kiribati and Tuvalu to moderate their demands, but Tesse Lambourne says it's part of negotiations for countries to try and convince each other of their positions.