Announcements – Oct 25, 2006. New York Times October 1, 2004 With Russia's Nod, Treaty on Emissions Clears Last Hurdle
October 1, 2004
With Russia's Nod, Treaty on Emissions Clears Last Hurdle
The long-delayed Kyoto Protocol on global warming overcame its last critical hurdle to taking effect around the world on Thursday when Russia's cabinet endorsed the treaty and sent it to Parliament. The treaty is the first to require cuts in emissions linked to global warming. The United States has rejected the treaty and will not be bound by its restrictions. But the treaty, which has already been ratified by 120 countries will take effect if supporters include nations accounting for at least 55 percent of all industrialized countries' 1990-level emissions. The only way for it to cross that threshold was with ratification by Russia. In 1990, the United States accounted for 36.1 percent of emissions from industrialized countries, and Russia 17.4 percent.
Nov. 10, 2004
Climate report leaves U.S. policy unchanged -
Climate treaty considered threat to U.S. jobs and economic growth
WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Bush is holding fast to his rejection of mandatory curbs on greenhouse gases that are blamed for global warming, despite a fresh report from 300 scientists in the United States and seven other nations that shows Arctic temperatures are rising. Critics say Bush's opposition is ironic because the treaty was modeled after the market-based U.S. program for cutting acid rain created in 1990 by Bush's father and often pointed to by the current administration as a success story.
President Bush’s plan offers incentives to businesses to voluntarily reduce U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by an estimated 4.5 percent over 10 years and to reduce power plant emissions. Bush's plan is dramatically lower than the estimated 33 percent mandatory reduction sought by the Kyoto agreement for the United States, the world's largest producer of greenhouse gas emissions.
Bush has criticized the treaty, saying it set unrealistic goals and could damage the U.S. economy. But other nations worry about scientific concerns that climate change could lead to severe floods and droughts, rising sea levels and an increase in malaria and respiratory disease.
World's most wanted: climate change
Human-induced climate change must be treated as an immediate threat to national security and prosperity, says John Ashton, the UK's climate change envoy. He argues that we must secure a stable climate whatever the cost, as failure to do so will cost far more.
World 'warmest for 12,000 years
The world is the warmest it has been in the last 12,000 years as a result of rapid warming over the past 30 years, a study has suggested. Nasa climatologists said the Earth had warmed by about 0.2C (0.4F) in each of the last three decades.
As a result, plant and animal species were struggling to migrate fast enough to cooler regions, they said.
Climatic records indicate a correlation between CO2 concentration and global temperatures over the past 400,000 years
Mount Kilimanjaro, one of the few places in the world where ice and snow can be found on the equator, could lose its entire ice field by 2020 because of climate change.
The ice fields Ernest Hemingway once described as "wide as all the world, great, high, and unbelievably white in the sun" have lost 82 percent of their ice since 1912—the year their full extent was first measured.
Human activity is the cause
Reduce Greenhouse Gases by:
Who reaps benefits and who pays costs?
VP Cheney: “Conservation may be a sign of personal virtue, but it is not a sufficient basis for a sound, comprehensive energy policy.”
Pres. Bush: “As you know, I oppose the Kyoto Protocol because it exempts 80 percent of the world… and would cause serious harm to the U.S. economy”
Who reaps benefits and who pays costs?