Speaking to UN Secretary Ban Ki-Moon's climate change summit this morning, President Obama spoke of the progress the U.S. has made on sustainable energy, but warned, "We did not come here to celebrate progress. We came because there's so much more progress to be made, so much more work to be done."
Speaking of the world as a whole, he said, "The hardest part of our journey is still ahead of us."
He pointed out American efforts to reign in greenhouse gases, including initiatives to capture carbon, build off-shore wind farms, phase out subsidies for fossil fuel and tracking, for the first time, how much greenhouse gas pollution the country is creating. He also urged fellow leaders of industrialized nations to help poorer countries fight climate change and create low-impact development.
"We understand the gravity of the climate threat," he said.
Obama looked forward to December's international climate change summit in Copenhagen. "We must seize the opportunity to make Copenhagen a significant step forward in the fight against climate change."
He lauded the energy bill currently in Congress, even though it won't be passed before Copenhagen, as his administration had previously hoped.
"We'll fight for every inch of progress, even when it comes in fits and starts. .. We resolve to work tirelessly in common effort," he said.