In a speech to the U.N. General Assembly today, President Obama said that the U.S. and other “developed nations” were responsible for causing “much of the damage to our climate over the last century.”
“We understand the gravity of the climate threat. We are determined to act. And we will meet our responsibility to future generations,” he said.
Obama warned that a failure to address the problem could create an “irreversible catastrophe.” Obama said time is “running out” to fix the problem but that, “we can reverse it.”
That wasn’t nearly enough to blunt the criticism directed at the United States by European and Asian leaders.
He was immediately followed on stage by Maldives President Mohamed Nasheed, who criticized the West for “complacency and broken promises” on climate change. . . .
John Bruton, head of the European Union delegation in Washington, also issued a statement ahead of Obama’s speech blasting the U.S. Senate.
This is a dangerous game. We blame ourselves for a crisis that may or may not exist: Are we really certain that the world is warming up dangerously, that industrial development is causing it, and that we can “fix the problem” without returning to a 19th-century economy?
Then, we grin as we are criticized by all and sundry.
Meanwhile, those gathered at the U.N. and the media covering them avoid talking about Islamist terrorism, genocide in Darfur, brutal suppression in Iran by a regime that is attempting to acquire nuclear weapons, and similar unfashionable topics.
It’s unreal. Or maybe it’s surreal.