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Doing It for the Kids
First lady Michelle Obama arrived in Copenhagen Wednesday to offer her support for Chicago's bid to host the 2016 Olympics. Her husband will leave shortly on Air Force One to meet her there and make his case.
Thursday morning, Mrs. Obama thanked fellow Chicagoan Oprah Winfrey for joining her in the Olympic pitch saying: "We dropped everything — dropped everything — to be a part of this team." Praising the team work, the first lady said: "As much of a sacrifice as people say this is for me or Oprah or the president to come for these few days," the team has been working for years.
She says her reasons for wanting to bring the games to Chicago, include the impact it could have on young people.
The effort and energy needed to make the president and first lady's quick trips to Copenhagen possible could be considered Olympic-sized by some estimates. The approximate cost of flying Air Force One round trip for 18 hours calculates to more than $1.2 million -- roughly $67,000 per hour.
The estimated greenhouse gas emissions of Air Force One for that trip amount to more than 1 million pounds of carbon dioxide. Compare that to a roundtrip on Amtrak from New York to Washington D.C. emits 220 pounds of carbon dioxide. The president's trip is the equivalent to 4,500 of those roundtrips.
The Boeing 757 the first lady rode separately emits nearly 374,000 pounds of carbon dioxide.
Those figures do not include the operational costs or emissions of the several passenger and cargo aircraft that accompany Air Force One with staff and equipment.
Copenhagen, by the way, will be the location for the climate change summit in December. No word yet on whether the president will attend.
Tokyo's governor says he is going for the gold before it's too late. His city is one of four vying to win the 2016 games.
Shintaro Ishihara warned Wednesday: "It could be that the 2016 Games are the last Olympics in the history of mankind... Global warming is getting worse. We have to come up with measures without which Olympic Games could not last long."
— FOX News Channel's Lanna Britt contributed to this report.
Bret Baier is the Chief Political Anchor of Fox News Channel, and the Anchor & Executive Editor of "Special Report with Bret Baier.” His book, "Three Days in January: Dwight Eisenhower’s Final Mission," (William Morrow) is on sale now.