summit, a worldwide meeting to try to develop a cohesive plan to
combat global warming, wrapped up last month. The summit hosted
110 leaders from nations around the world, including
U.S. President Barack Obama. Many view the summit as a
success as 55 nations met the January 31 deadline to summit their
emissions plans, set in the Copenhagen Accord. Greenhouse
gases come from diverse sources including agriculture, industry, and
transportation. The plans involve reducing the release of these
gases such as carbon dioxide and methane by a set percent in order to
try to keep global temperature increases within a maximum of 2
degrees Celsius.The commitment, though, varied wildly.
The U.S. pledged to cut 17 percent of its emissions with respect to
2000 levels by 2020 and 83
percent by 2050. The host, the European Union, pledged even
bigger cuts -- 20 percent emissions reductions with respect
to 1990 levels
by 2020.Other nations only committed to relatively minor
cuts. Australia said it would only cut emissions 5 percent by
2020. Japan and New Zealand refused to commit to any definitive
cuts unless a uniform global cut was adopted.Now one of
India's senior negotiators at the summit has aired harsh words about
the industrialized nations' level of commitment to combating climate
change. Chandrashekhar Dasgupta states,
"We need truly ambitious emission reduction commitments from
industrialized countries. If you see figures that industrialized
countries have submitted in response to the Copenhagen Accord, these
are truly pathetic."He also questioned that some of the
nations would meet even their modest commitments. He comments,
"The European Union had envisaged a reduction of from 25% to 30%
from developed countries, they're nowhere near this."He
and his fellow leaders in developing nations such as China have
called on the industrialized nations to make 40 percent cuts by 2040,
with respect to 2000 levels. He accuses the industrialized
nations of disrespecting developing nations' leaders at the summit
saying he was "lectured and hectored" by them.He
vents, "We can do so much consistent with maintaining our
development priorities. Beyond this, it is going to cost tens of
billions of dollars. The upper end of the commitments will take us to
a peaking of global emissions by about 2020, maybe a bit
later."Britain's Energy Secretary Ed Miliband refuted
Mr. Dasgupta's accusations, saying the commitments from the European
Union were ambitious and sufficient. He states, "The upper
end of the commitments will take us to a peaking of global emissions
by about 2020, maybe a bit later. I do think the commitments made in
the accord are an important step forward and I don't think they
should be dismissed. The key is to get developed countries to drive
up to the upper end of their commitments because that is what the
world needs."His comments illustrate a growing battle on
the subject of combating climate change. Industrialized nations
say that the so-called third world and developing nations need to do
more fight climate change. Yet, they have been largely
unwilling to entice these nations with financial aid. Meanwhile
developing nations largely feel that they should be able to freely
expand without restrictions, as industrialized nations already got to
ride the bus, so to speak.Of the industrialized nations a
handful have decreased their emissions in recent years such as
France, Germany, and Great Britain, without suffering any significant
economic detriment. Others like the U.S., Canada, Australia,
and Spain have instead seen significant increases in emissions.
quote: It makes good sense to help them grow while avoiding bad practices and that cost money.
quote: Looking at CO2 numbers without factoring in population size is like looking at the sign in an elevator stating max load. It makes a lot of difference whether you load the elevator with cheerleaders or football players. The US emitting a lot more per capita than India and China. In fact it is about a factor 15 when comparing the US and India. Considering this I'd say the Indians could very well say doing anything is moot as long as the US does nothing!
quote: That is simply BS.
quote: Considering most beachfront properties are rebuilt in less time than that, we could solve the entire problem just by passing laws requiring new construction to be set 10 meters further back.
quote: The global temperature record shows no statistically significant warming since 1995.
quote: Since 2001, it actually shows cooling...though not to a signficant degree.
quote: Why does the USA *have* to give other countries money?
quote: How about we worry about our own economic growth instead? You know, the one that could help slow down shipping our jobs to them so their economy grows?
quote: No, Global Warming is BS. It's nothing more than a charge for global government, social engineering, global taxes, and the destruction of capitalism and developed nations wealth.
quote: Who gives a $hit?
quote: The US emitting a lot more per capita than India and China. In fact it is about a factor 15 when comparing the US and India
quote: D. That is simply BS.
quote: Gallup poll data taken in 2008
quote: "This is not fiction, this is science. Unchecked, climate change will pose unacceptable risks to our security, our economies, and our planet."Barack Obama, US president, 18/12/09
quote: Better yet! If we adopt Chinese and Indian babies, that will reduce our per capita emissions while simultanously increasing theirs! Brilliant! How many carbon credits is a Chinese baby worth?
quote: Reclaimer, the US is in the top 5 in emissions I believe, right?
quote: When I was looking up numbers online, I was actually surprised to see that Canada
quote: Important thing is that this revolution has definitely destroyed the climate of planet earth and culprits are those who have been doing for last 200 years.
quote: While anthropogenic climate change has not been unambiguously detected , evidence for a human effect on climate is mounting...The surface temperature of the earth has risen by about half a degree centigrade over the last century. This rate of change is similar in magnitude to natural climate changes but also well within the range of the possible effects of the historical rise in greenhouse gas concentrations... Unambiguously detecting climate change through the record of global mean temperature is not possible at this point...Technological change and a general increase in wealth through economic growth will leave the world better able to deal with this issue in the future...A risk-averse viewpoint argues for mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions as soon as possible to avoid the possibility of harm. An opposite view advocates waiting until we are more certain about climate change effects (and more able to effect changes). This part of the debate will be better informed, but not solved, by improved science
quote: Looking at CO2 numbers without factoring in population size is like looking at the sign in an elevator stating max load. It makes a lot of difference whether you load the elevator with cheerleaders or football players.
quote: "They are the people who want everyone to have the same outputs, but not worry about what they actually put into the system."
quote: I think there is a decent chance that he's doing what he can to "guilt" us into screwing over our economy.
quote: A surprising revelation from a new paper: industrial emission actually have a net cooling effect on Earth's climate. The paper that appears in the Proceeding of the National Academy of Sciences early edition attempts to apportion blame for global warming among various economic sectors. Climate impacts of CO2, tropospheric ozone, fine aerosols, aerosol-cloud interactions, methane, and long-lived greenhouse gases were all analyzed and the appropriate human activities cited. When the dust settled, two sectors turned in large net negative (i.e. cooling) forcing values: biomass burning and industry
quote: d) The world stopped warming 15 years ago
quote: a handful have decreased their emissions in recent years such as France, Germany, and Great Britain, without suffering any significant economic detriment. Others like the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Spain have instead seen significant increases in emissions.
quote: US per capita emissions have DECLINED since the 1980s
quote: several groups say the official government accounting is incorrect, and actual emissions have grown substantially:
quote: Even Kyoto's most ardent supporters admit that actually cutting emissions to the point of having a real effect would be far, far more costly.
quote: Oh really? You expect me to replace official government metrics with speculation?
quote: In December, a team of economists led by Dieter Helm at Oxford University, said UK progress on cutting greenhouse gases was an "illusion". Counting pollution from aviation, shipping, overseas trade and tourism, which are not measured in the official figures, meant that emissions of UK greenhouse gases – not just CO2 – have risen 19% since 1990.
quote: Then why wasn't it for Germany, France and Britain? One key is to embrace nuclear power -- part of France's success. And we are doing that. If we turn to cheaper alternative energy sources primarily (like nuclear), it shouldn't be as expensive as extremists would have you believe to reduce our carbon footprint substantially.
quote: a handful have decreased their emissions in recent years such as France, Germany, and Great Britain, without suffering any significant economic detriment.
quote: The commitment, though, varied wildly. The U.S. pledged to cut 17 percent of its emissions with respect to 2000 levels by 2020 and 83 percent by 2050. The host, the European Union, pledged even bigger cuts -- 20 percent emissions reductions with respect to 1990 levels by 2020.
quote: Of the industrialized nations a handful have decreased their emissions in recent years such as France, Germany, and Great Britain, without suffering any significant economic detriment.