The autobiography, Clinton’s second, comes just days after President Barack Obama unveiled aggressive new climate-change measures aimed at U.S. coal-fired electricity.
It describes how she and the boss barged into a secret meeting at the 2009 Copenhagen climate-change conference involving emissaries from China, India, Brazil and South Africa.
After exchanging a mischievous look, the pair marched right in, past frantic Chinese officials. Obama shouted, “Mr. Premier!” to get the attention of Wen Jiabao and other stunned leaders sitting in the room.
That tense encounter helped break the old Kyoto accord divisions, where only developed economies had agreed to curb emissions, she writes.
In that same chapter, Clinton echoes an argument made this week by Prime Minister Stephen Harper: countries are generally unwilling to sacrifice prosperity to attain climate goals. She describes the process as herding cats.
But she warns against casting the environment and the economy as an either-or choice, citing the expansion of natural gas in the U.S. as one example of how greenhouse gases can shrink and the economy can grow at the same time.
“When the economy is hurting and people are looking for jobs, many other concerns fade into the background,” Clinton writes. “And the old false choice between promoting the economy and protecting the environment surfaces once again.”