The Bella Center paused as global leaders stepped up to the podium for the first time this afternoon. Everybody was hoping for something new from China and the United States, but neither Wen Jiabao nor Barack Obama offered up anything of the sort. Only Brazilian President Inacio Luiz Lula da Silva put something new on the table, saying that Brazil would meet its pledge without any international resources and would in fact contribute money to help poorer countries cope with global warming.
Lula invoked God, angels and miracles, and said all three might be necessary in order to reach a meaningful deal today. Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was much more practical, suggesting that maybe it’s time to start thinking about 2010.
Notably, all four said they will continue doing what they are already doing, and what they had proposed to do under an international treaty, regardless of what happens today.