The White House released a YouTube video Saturday previewing the president's message.
"This is a serious challenge but one that's suited to America's strengths," the president said.
He said innovative technology and other changes can slow the release of greenhouse gases but action now is imperative.
"There's no single step that can reverse global climate change but when it comes to future generations of our children we owe it to them to do what we can," he said.
Heather Zichal, White House coordinator for energy and climate change, said last week Obama is "serious about making [climate change policy] it a second-term priority."