Obama prepping the world for a climate letdown?

It seems telling that President Obama ended his first major address on climate change not with a stirring call to action, but by urging pragmatism and compromise: But the journey is long. The journey is hard. And we don’t have much time left to make it. It is a journey that will require each of ...

By , a former associate editor at Foreign Policy.

It seems telling that President Obama ended his first major address on climate change not with a stirring call to action, but by urging pragmatism and compromise:

It seems telling that President Obama ended his first major address on climate change not with a stirring call to action, but by urging pragmatism and compromise:

But the journey is long. The journey is hard. And we don’t have much time left to make it. It is a journey that will require each of us to persevere through setback, and fight for every inch of progress, even when it comes in fits and starts. So let us begin. For if we are flexible and pragmatic; if we can resolve to work tirelessly in common effort, then we will achieve our common purpose: a world that is safer, cleaner, and healthier than the one we found; and a future that is worthy of our children. Thank you.

It sounds a bit like Obama is premptively defending a climate bill that will probably turn out to be less aggressive than the other delegates in Copenhagen might like and like Bill Clinton, is looking to assure environmentalists that any bill is better than none if it moves the ball forward.

Joshua Keating was an associate editor at Foreign Policy. Twitter: @joshuakeating

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