Clinton and Brown in joint attack on deniers; praise for PM from world’s leaders

Gordon Brown & Hilary Clinton joined in the attacks on climate deniers at the Copenhagen summit this morning, & the Australian PM has praised Brown’s leadership

The Prime Minister has today told the Copenhagen summit “no one can honestly deny” that inaction on man made climate change “could wipe whole countries from the map”.

His attack on the deniers and sceptics follows his deputy Harriet Harman’s remarks at PMQ’s yesterday in which she savaged Conservatives for their participation in a flawed report which claimed climate change “was entirely natural”.

Immediately after his speech, US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton backed up the Prime Minister, calling climate change an “undeniable and unforgiving fact”.

The Prime Minister began his speech by saying:

“This is the greatest challenge of our time. We need to show the highest level of ambition and will.

“The success of our endeavours depends upon us forging a new alliance, not one block against another, not north against south, not rich against poor but the first global alliance of 192 countries, a new alliance for the preservation of our planet.”

UPDATE 11:05

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has just told Sky News that without Gordon Brown he doubts world leaders “would be as close as we are” to securing a deal. He said:

“The virtue of Gordon Brown’s leadership on the question of climate change finance is that he’s put paramaters around this debate. Prior to Prime Minister Brown’s intervention this was floating in space. He’s actually provided some grounding for it and focused the discussion.

“We’re still nowhere near an agreement yet, but I’ve gotta say without his intervention I doubt that we would be as close as we are at present to both a short term and longer term financial arrangement.”

He added:

“I talk to Gordon several times a day, there’s always a whirr of activity around the British Prime Minister. He’s well known and well respected in these negotiations.”

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