By Ben Geman - 09/07/12 03:20 AM EDT
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- President Obama called the 2012 election a pivotal moment in the battle against climate change and criticized Republicans who say global warming is a myth.
“More droughts and floods and wildfires are not a joke. They're a threat to our children's future. And in this election, you can do something about it,” he said to loud applause near the beginning of his speech in Charlotte, N.C., accepting his party’s presidential nomination at the Democratic National Convention.
Obama’s comments are likely to thrill environmentalists who have sought more emphasis on the topic from the campaign.
One week earlier, Mitt Romney, in his GOP nomination acceptance speech, mocked Obama's call four years ago that 2008 could begin a time when the rise of the oceans began to slow.
The president touted the carbon emission reductions as a result of his policies that are boosting auto efficiency, expanding green energy and using less energy in buildings.
He noted that the country has substantially reduced its oil import reliance, pointing out it’s at the lowest point in almost two decades.
Obama touted his support for continued expansion of domestic oil drilling as part of a wider energy strategy.
He endorsed continued natural gas development that he said can support hundreds of thousands of new jobs.