Many on the international Left had unrealistic expectations of what Barack Obama could achieve (and at what pace) but green groups and commenters have reacted furiously to the outcome of the Copenhagen climate talks summit:
"The city of Copenhagen is a climate crime scene tonight, with the guilty men and women fleeing to the airport in shame. World leaders had a once in a generation chance to change the world for good, to avert catastrophic climate change. In the end they produced a poor deal full of loopholes big enough to fly Air Force One through." - Kumi Naidoo, Executive Director of Greenpeace (quoted at The Huffington Post).
"The world's worst polluters - the people who are drastically altering the climate - gathered here in Copenhagen to announce they were going to carry on cooking, in defiance of all the scientific warnings. They didn't seal the deal; they sealed the coffin for the world's low-lying islands, its glaciers, its North Pole, and millions of lives." - Johann Hari, The Independent
"Today optimism feels impossible. The chance of world leaders preventing a more than 2C increase in temperature looks vanishingly small. Politics is being weighed in the balance and found wanting. The writing is on the wall. The leadership required within and between each nation is heavier lifting that the weak machinery of governmental power can manage." - Polly Toynbee, The Guardian
The Sky News video below records President Obama's immediate reaction to the limited agreement: