Australia will sign up to the second commitment to the Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change Minister Greg Combet announced on Friday.
Joining a second commitment period will ensure Australian businesses have access to international credits under the Clean Development Mechanism, helping Australia reduce emissions at the lowest cost to the economy, he said.
The second commitment to the Kyoto Protocol will be a major topic of the climate talks to be held in Doha later this year. In Doha, Australia will commit to limiting its greenhouse gas emissions from 2013 to 2020 with a Kyoto target consistent with the bipartisan target of reducing emissions to 5 percent below 2000 levels by 2020.
Greens leader Christine Milne said a more realistic emissions target for Australia would be 25 to 40 percent.
Meanwhile, Combet said Australia will push for a broader deal to be concluded by 2015.
The Kyoto Protocol was the first global treaty to set binding obligations on countries to cut emissions. Australia's accession to the Kyoto Protocol on Dec. 12, 2007 was one of the first acts of the Labor Government.