LIVE coverage of President Obama's address to the Pacific Island Conference of Leaders
5:50 PM: Aloha Discover readers! I'm here in the press pool at the University of Hawaii's East West Center, ready to hear President Obama remark on the expansion of the Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument
. Stay tuned for live coverage of the event!
6:00 PM: Want to watch while the president speaks? Check out the live YouTube feed! https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ZF2iLMNlmXk 6:30 PM: It's a full house!
6:45 PM: Obama is talking about the importance of the monument and protecting its rich biodiversity. "I'm very proud of these achievements." Obama stressing the importance of big carbon emitters "like my country" working with nations around the world to take on climate change. 6:46 PM: "If you want to row a canoe, every oar has to be rowing in unison." 6:47 PM: "There's a dire possibility of us getting off course, and we can't allow that to happen." 6:50 PM: "We have to unite to move forward. We have to row as one. And if we do, we might just save the one planet we've got." 6:55 PM: That's it folks! President Obama greeted the dignitaries and VIPs as he left.
Reflections: It was a short but sweet speech, and Mr. Obama did not pull punches when it came to describing the dire situation many of the Pacific Island nations are facing due to climate change. It is so refreshing to hear a world leader speak so frankly and pointedly about this issue.