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« Quotational Therapy: Part 75 -- Washington Is Questioning Your Patriotism. | WILLisms.com | 400,000 Visitors. »

Trivia Tidbit Of The Day: Part 275 -- Kyoto.

Climate Change-

How is that little Kyoto environmental experiment going?

Not that great

The Kyoto Protocol requires industrialized countries to cut carbon dioxide emissions by an average 5.2 percent below 1990 levels by 2008-2012. But 13 of the 15 original members of the European Union have increased their emissions since 1990, not reduced them. New data by the EU's own European Environmental Agency show that by 2010, the 15 nations' emissions collectively will exceed 1990 levels by seven percent.

Meanwhile, the economic growth costs are not to be ignored:

Handicapping Kyoto's future is the fact that the treaty is economic suicide, and most European nations know it. According to the Brussels economic research organization International Council for Capital Formation (ICCF), the UK's gross domestic product will fall more than 1 percent in 2010 from what it otherwise would be, Italy's by more than 2 percent, and Spain's by more than 3 percent as a result of Kyoto's emissions targets. The UK, Italy, and Germany each would lose at least 200,000 jobs; Spain would lose 800,000.

There is a better way, however:

Enter the Asia-Pacific Partnership, a new coalition of Australia, China, India, Japan, South Korea, and the United States, committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions through the development of new, clean technologies. The gang of six, who first met officially last month in Sydney, will invest in new R&D promoting cleaner sources of energy and work with China and India to utilize them. By comparison, Kyoto failed to sign up China and India, the emerging industrial giants that together emit over 20 percent of the world's greenhouse gases.

Think about that. The ever-revered Kyoto Protocols did not even include these two heavy-polluting countries. As China and India grow, their increased emissions will dwarf the hypothetical decreases Kyoto demanded. But European countries are not even close to meeting their goals.

There's a reason why the United States Senate voted 95-0 during the Clinton administration to reject Kyoto.

Indeed, Kyoto forgot to include the entire developing world, while handicapping its signatories, economically. And for what?

This, apparently:


Why on earth should the United States have signed up for such a lose-lose contract? And why does anyone still listen to European leaders when they whine about America's carbon emissions?


Previous Trivia Tidbit: Our Complex Tax Code.

Posted by Will Franklin · 21 February 2006 10:51 AM


China and India produce 20% of the world's greenhouse gases, yet are exempt? The first step to getting the problem under control is to shut down the coal powerplant industry and convert to another source of electricity. But since TMI, we have shut down Nuclear power. We have a regulatory process that makes it almost impossible to build a nuclear plant.

So how do we cut greenhouse gases if we cannot convert to clean technologies? We don't. We just roll over and take a 2-3% GDP hit while not effectively reducing these gases and while not changing our flawed regulatory system that has encouraged the growth of these plants in the first place.

Why is it that the Greens don't blame the Dems for defeating Kyoto? Just Bush? Clinton was President and the Senate voted 95-0 against it? How is this the Evil Republicans? Surely some Democrat would vote for it if it was a good idea for the country and the environment.

Posted by: Justin B at February 21, 2006 02:30 PM

When we all start driving Hybrids what are the Greens going to say about the batteries? I mean the batteries are going to go out after 6 years. Sooooo?? Have they made any suggestions? Maybe I am getting ahead of myself and am too futuristic. They always have to have something to gripe about...

Posted by: Zsa Zsa at February 21, 2006 03:04 PM

A strong argument can be made that the new cleaner technology should be given priority in the developing countries. If the rapidly growing economies invest in old technology, the world wide pollution will double very quickly. Old economies have to transition slowly or pay a high cost, while the newer economies can start at the next level of technology for a much smaller cost - they have no preexisting infrastructure. A corollary is communications. Should the developing countries string miles of copper wire on poles? No. Wireless towers and underground fiber optic cables is the proper infrastructure. Unless they want to start with the telegraph and rotary dial telephone.

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