Mario Di Simine's Profile
Change must start from grassroots, Schwarzenegger tells COP15
The COP15 conference on climate change will be a success even if no deal comes out of it, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said on Tuesday in Copenhagen.
“It depends on what your definition of a deal is,” Schwarzenegger told the media. “The important thing is to move the agenda forward.”
The governor is in Copenhagen to participate in a number of events on the sidelines of the main conference. Before meeting with the media, Schwarzenegger delivered a speech to an audience of mostly non-governmental organization members on California’s climate change efforts and the important of leading from the grassroots level.
“The important issue that I’m here to address is to not go and just rely solely on the federal government and national governments,” he said afterward. “All great movements start from grassroots level.”
California leads the United States in its legal mandate to cut greenhouse gases that warm the planet, from auto mileage standards adopted by the rest of the nation to green building codes.
Schwarzenegger said the leaders in Copenhagen needed to listen more to “ordinary folks” and when asked if he really expected Africa to listen to California he said California has already been a leader in the area, having formed partnerships with other states, Canadian provinces and Chinese provinces to affect change from the ground up.
“We don’t wait for Washington,” he said. “We’ve given that up long ago.”
What an excerpt from Schwarzenegger’s news conference: