More than 100 people from a coalition called the Mobilization for Climate Justice began at Justin Herman Plaza, marched up Market Street, and then blocked entrances to the Bank of America building.
President Obama will be speaking in Copenhagen in a few days as the United Nations negotiates the climate crisis.
The president will propose reductions of American carbon dioxide emissions, but not enough according to the people marching Monday.
"There is obviously no leadership that wants to tackle this. If they did they would be talking about it. I mean a 17 percent reduction in carbon emissions in the next 10 years? That's laughable," said David Gredfrath, a climate change protestor.
As part of their demonstration the protestors planned non-violent civil disobedience.
At last check, San Francisco police had arrested 17 of them for blocking the bank's entrances.