Hello, I'm Mike G., I'm a web editor for Greenpeace USA and I'll be blogging here on the Climate Rescue blog from the UN climate talks in Copenhagen. Just wanted to take this opportunity to introduce myself and comment on a recent news story, that being the news that has just broken about how President Obama is once again going to be in the right city at the wrong time.
President Obama will be going to the UN climate talks in person — except he's going about a week too early. He’s stopping in Copenhagen on December 9th on his way to pick up his Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo on the 10th.
The Copenhagen climate summit is not a mere photo-opp, but unfortunately that seems to be how Obama is treating it. The talks are aimed at getting a fair, ambitious, and binding global agreement to stop global warming. President Obama needs to be there at the same time as all the other wold leaders, on December 18. This is the last day of the negotiations, when all the heads of state show up, are presented with the agreements achieved so far by their delegates, and do the high-level negotiations that lead to a final agreement.
On October 2nd, 2009, when President Obama was in Copenhagen to lobby for Chicago to host the Olympics, Greenpeace activists let him know that he'd shown up in the right city on the wrong date. © Greenpeace/Juan Hein
Obama needs to be there on December 18 to ensure we get the right agreement. But once again, Obama is going to be in the right city on the wrong date. Given the shamefully weak emissions targets Obama’s administration is going to announce ahead of the climate change talks, it almost seems like he's just not even taking this issue seriously.
If you haven't already, you can sign this petition calling on world leaders to go to the Copenhagen climate summit. Many heads of state, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown, and Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, have already committed to going. But there are a few stragglers named in the petition, including Obama, who have yet to commit to really attending the talks in person in order to ensure an ambitious deal gets signed.
The conference starts on December 7th. Make sure you keep checking this blog for updates on how the climate talks are going in Copenhagen!