President Obama arrived here in Copenhagen today and delivered a far from newsworthy speech to 170 assembled world leaders. Offering a take it or leave it proposal which will if adopted still allow a minimum 3 degree temperature rise by 2100, Obama stood ready to declare the Fifteenth UN Climate Change Conference (COP15) a victory. The developing countries who are most directly threatened by global heating have resisted the bullying tactics adopted by the US and its allies in Copenhagen to their great credit. Indeed, as they have repeatedly stressed during the past two weeks, their very survival is at stake.
The President's speech has been severely criticized around the world as falling far short of what is needed to push a meaningful agreement in Copenhagen and something less than inspirational. It would seem the administration has paid little attention to the dialogue in Copenhagen and feels confident imposing its business-near-usual approach on the assembly.
World leaders will stay overnight in Copenhagen and attempt to hammer out a deal which will save face - especially the American President's. There is little chance any agreement forthcoming from COP15 would go far enough to satisfy what the science demands be done to ensure a post-industrial temperature rise of less than 2 degrees.
As a gesture of good will and a consolation for their island nations certain burial beneath the rising seas, Obama is expected to donate Air force One to the Maldives and Tuvalu for evacuations as needed.
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