Tomorrow is the most important day of the year to date for global action on climate change. Barack Obama will be meeting with Hu Jintao, China’s President, at the UN in New York. They’ll be meeting to discuss climate change in advance of the big G20 meeting in Pittsburgh on Thursday.
China and the US are in control of a global climate change pact. The countries emit most carbon. If the China doesn’t get on board with a global climate deal, than the US probably won’t either.
The US climate bill is stalled in the Senate. A draft of the bill isn’t expected until October, and debate about the bill is unlikely in 2009. By 2010, it’ll be election time. It’s going to be hard to get a lot of people to stick out their necks on a controversial bill.
During the House debate on the climate bill, critics brought up China regularly. If China commits to a workable solution it’s going to be a lot easier for Senators to sell the climate bill to their constituents.
Obama has dissapointed environmentalists by focusing all his efforts on the healthcare debate. If he can hit a home run tomorrow, and start towards a solution with China, it will be a thousand times more valuable than making a prime time speech in favour of cap and trade like he’s done for healthcare.
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