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Obama, Clinton, Podesta on Climate Change

Tuesday, 22 Sep 2009 | 11:20 AM ET

As the United Nations geared up for a meeting on climate change on Tuesday, politicians and other experts shared their insights on CNBC.

Obama on Climate Change
President Obama discusses the issue of climate change and what must be done to reverse its damage and find a solution to fix the problem.

Obama's Message On Climate Change

"Our generation's response to this challenge will be judged by history. For if we fail to meet it boldly, swiftly and together, we risk consigning future generations to an irreversible catastrophe. No nation, however large or small, wealthy or poor, can escape the impact of climate change."

- President Barack Obama

President Clinton's Caucus of Change
The Clinton Global Initiative's 2009 annual meeting kicks off today, and leaders in politics, business and humanitarianism have gathered in New York to address education, climate change, global health and poverty. Former President Bill Clinton discusses the upcoming event with CNBC.

Clinton's Caucus of Change

"We should emphasize both the security aspects of becoming more energy independent and the economic potential of changing the way we consume energy. This is a huge economic opportunity for us and the poor countries who are dependent on imports. We should seize it. The Chinese see it for what it is: an enormous economic opportunity."

- Bill Clinton, former U.S. President

UN Convening on Climate Change
The United Nations is gearing up for a high level event on climate change today, with President Obama in attendance. UN Executive Secretary for Climate Change Yvo De Boer discusses the event.

"I think the situation we're in, in the international negotiations, is that they're in cardiac arrest and I think they need a couple hundred of volts of 'Yes, we can.' So I really hope that President Obama is going to inject energy and belief in the debate today."

- Yvo De Boer, UN executive secretary for climate change

Clean Energy Opportunities
John Podesta, president and CEO of the Center for American Progress, discusses clean energy opportunities and politics.

Pushing for a Climate Energy Bill

"I think what's happened on Capitol Hill is that energy has taken a backseat to health care... Right now it's gonna have to wait its turn... The structure of trying to put an overall cap on carbon emissions and global warming emissions will likely remain in the bill. I think there's more support for nuclear power in the Senate than the House, so you might see some additional support for nuclear power."

- John Podesta, Center for American Progress president & CEO

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