NOPENHAGEN: Obama Brings Nothing To The Table

obama_cowbell_1.jpgASSOCIATED PRESS: “We are running short on time,” he said. “We are ready to get this done today. But there has to be movement on all sides.” And yet Obama arrived in snow-covered Copenhagen with no new proposal from the U.S. side. Some had hoped he might increase Washington’s emissons-cut pledge, now only a fraction of those from other developed countries, or put a specific dollar amount on America’s expected contributions to short- or long-term aid funds to help poorer nations deal with the effects of climate change. Obama planned to spend only about nine hours at the summit. He was holding a series of large and small meetings with various leaders, including those from China and Russia. His talks with Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao were being watched especially closely, as sniping between the two countries dominated the summit earlier this week. With Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, the main topic was likely to be nuclear weapons. The two nations are negotiating to replace an expired Cold War-era arms control treaty. The U.S. commitment to reduce greenhouse gasses mirrors legislation before Congress. It calls for 17 percent reduction in such pollution from 2005 levels by 2020 – the equivalent of 3 percent to 4 percent from the more commonly used baseline of 1990 levels. That is far less than the offers from the European Union, Japan and Russia. MORE

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