Editor's Note: This post was originally published on GlobalWarmingisReal.com
In a moving address at the opening session to the 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP21), President Barack Obama called on world leaders and delegates assembled in the plenary hall at Le Bourget for resolve in the coming two weeks of negotiations, keeping in mind the long-term implications of the results.
"Our generation may not even live to see the full realization of what we do here,” Obama said at the close of his speech. "But the knowledge that the next generation will be better off for what we do here – can we imagine a more worthy reward than that?"
By afternoon, the "Blue Zone” at COP21 was buzzing with activity reporting this historic gathering of leaders in common resolve. A 2:30 press conference held by the U.S. Climate Action Network allowed leaders from several U.S.-based NGOs to offer their reactions to Obama’s speech earlier in the day.
Here is a sampling:
She said that momentum and political will within the U.S. continues to build, citing three key points feeding this momentum:
Part of America's newly-found street cred is the Clean Power Plan recently mandated by the U.S. EPA. Hamilton referred to Xcel Energy, Minnesota’s largest power utility. First saying the plan would devastate the company, Xcel has turned course and is now "completely on board.”
The economics of clean energy is clearly the better route, "[demonstrating] the need to continue ratcheting up ambition."
He applauded Obama’s acknowledgement of U.S. responsibility for creating the problem, as well as embracing solutions to fix it.
The focus in the first official day at COP21 is on the opportunity.
Image courtesy of FranceBlueu.com
Tom is the founder, editor, and publisher of GlobalWarmingisReal.com and the TDS Environmental Media Network. He has been a contributor for Triple Pundit since 2007. Tom has also written for Slate, Earth911, the Pepsico Foundation, Cleantechnia, Planetsave, and many other sustainability-focused publications. He is a member of the Society of Environmental Journalists