Thursday, December 17, 2009
Climate change "action hero" looks beyond COP15
by Carmelo Amalfi
CALIFORNIA Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger says the world will continue to pursue ways to curb global warming even if no resolution is reached at the Copenhagen conference.
"Technological and economic forces will overtake the political and regulatory efforts of governments," he told delegates at COP15.
"The world's governments alone cannot make progress. They need everyone working together."
Using his state as an example, Schwarzenegger said California - the seventh biggest economy in the world - and other countries had already embraced the green revolution.
"The power of influence we have is equivalent to that of a continent," the Austrian-born former Hollyood actor said.
"In California, we are proceeding with renewable energy and a cap and trade system to reduce greenhouse gases.
"Nearly 60 per cent of venture capital in the US flows to California, creating a critical mass of money and intellect to create new green technologies."
California was one of the first states in the US to commit to reducing greenhouse gases by 30 per cent to 1990 levels by 2020.
Schwarzenegger said he believed the world's business community will move to solar and wind and other alternative technologies much faster than most people expect.
He said developing countries will leapfrog into the green economy and skip the fossil fuel industry.
"We are beginning one of history's great transitions to build an economic foundation for the 21st century," he said.
"This conference is already a success."
He also offered to host a climate summit to continue the work achieved at COP15.