NYT reports Obama will attend climate conference, emissions target in hand

The New York Times government and political blog the Caucus was reporting Wednesday morning that President Obama will attend the United Nations global climate change summit in Copenhagen next month, where he will commit to reducing U.S. greenhouse gas emissions 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020.

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The administration had yet to commit to even attending the Dec. 7-18 conference, let alone coming with a concrete emissions reduction target, but now, according to the Times, Obama will deliver a speech there on Dec. 9 on his way to Oslo, Norway, to accept the Nobel Peace Prize the next day.

The administration had been reluctant to over-commit on emissions before the Senate debated its version of a House-passed climate change bill on the full floor. But failing to provide some U.S. direction could have torpedoed any substantial agreement coming out of Copenhagen, where 190 nations will converge to lay the groundwork for a sweeping climate change deal.

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