Obama: Not Enough “Hope & Change” On Climate Change
Today, the White House announced that President Obama will attend the UN sponsored climate conference in Copenhagen. The US President is scheduled to deliver a speech in Copenhagen on December 9, on his way to Oslo, Norway, where he will receive the Nobel Peace prize on December 10.
In the last few weeks, President Obama has been under tremendous pressure both from other world leaders, such as Chancellor Merkel and President Sarkozy, and from environment advocates such as Greenpeace, 350.org and Hopenhagen to be in attendance.
The talks in Copenhagen will fall short of producing a legally binding international agreement to cap greenhouse gas emissions. President Obama is expected to tell the delegates at the climate conference that the United States intends to reduce its greenhouse gases emissions “in the range of 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020” according to a White House official.
However, this objective falls far short of the recommendations made by UN scientists. They are recommending that developed countries make emission cuts of between 25 percent and 40 percent below 1990 (not 2005) levels by 2020. The EU has already committed to cut its emissions by 20 percent below 1990 levels by 2020, Russia and Japan by 25 percent.
On the other hand, the United States, which is with China the biggest global emitter, proposal for a 17 percent cut from 2005’s emission levels would only be a 3.5 percent cut from 1990’s greenhouse gases levels. Such a cut would have a negligible impact in curbing global warming and climate change. Once again, President Obama’s actions are not matching the inspiring rhetoric of Barack Obama the candidate.