The White House just announced that US President Barack Obama will be going to Copenhagen…to support Chicago’s Olympic bid.
If the President is willing to travel across the world to try and lobby the International Olympic Committee to award the games to Chicago, there should be no excuse for him to travel back to Copenhagen in December to help hash out a climate deal.
Many heads of government have announced their intention to attend the COP15 talks–including British Prime Minister Gordon Brown. In Brown’s estimation, having the highest level of representation in Copenhagen shows the urgency needed to hash out a global deal.
If Obama goes to Copenhagen to support a two-week sporting event and fails to attend a historic meeting in the same city to transform the world’s economy towards a low-carbon path, the symbolism will be noted by delegations from other countries.
It won’t bode well for generating a global response for dealing with one of the most pressing issues of our time.