Day Nine of the United Nations Climate Change Conference 2009

The gesture seemed lighthearted, but the message was not: Progress has been halting in international climate negotiations here.

Yvo de Boer, the top United Nations climate official here, and Connie Hedegaard, the Danish chairwoman of the talks, ticked off the daunting issues facing small working groups in the final days of the two-week conference.

"If this conference doesn't get strong national agreement some will say we have failed," Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said during his speech to a packed audience in Copenhagen on Tuesday.

He did add, "but this conference is already a success (because) it brought the focus to the world that something has to be done." However, his remarks suggested to some that even our ever-optimistic "green governor" is skeptical a meaningful climate deal will be reached at the summit.