Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Science Government Politics

Kyoto Protocol Comes Into Force 1336

Posted by Zonk
from the better-to-use-this-than,-say,-tcp/ip dept.
Cally writes "The controversial Kyoto Treaty regulating CO2 emissions finally comes into force today. The BBC has several stories and backgrounders, and notes that international pressure is now mounting on the USA to take action as well, as the scientific consensus is well established. A key question is whether the US economy will benefit relative the rest of the world, with some arguing that new technologies such as clean power generation and energy efficient appliances will provide an economic boost."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Kyoto Protocol Comes Into Force

Comments Filter:
  • More news coverage (Score:5, Informative)

    by Cally (10873) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @09:36AM (#11687828) Homepage
    I left this out of the submission cos it looked like there were enough links in there to keep anyone happy for a while...

    There is plenty of other news coverage [google.com] of this. As I type this (2pm UK time) it's still the lead story on Murdoch's Sky News satellite TV channel. Although this is known to be generally right of center (by UK standards) the tenor of their reporting is much the same as the BBC's, with respect to the whole "pressure mounts on the USA" aspect, and the fact that the science has reached the status of accepted fact in popular discourse. (I know there are still plenty of areas of legitimate debate, disagreement, and continuing research amongst real scientists, but the basic thesis that anthropogenic CO2 can affect, and IS already affecting global climate is about as solidly accepted as anything gets in the public mind - over here at any rate.

  • Kyoto Rules (Score:5, Informative)

    by grqb (410789) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @09:40AM (#11687867) Homepage Journal
    theWatt [thewatt.com] has a summary of the important details [thewatt.com]. Basically 127 countries have signed up (but not the US). Countries that have ratified the protocol must reduce emissions (such as CO2, methane, NOx etc) by 5.2% of 1990 levels by 2010, this is expected to be about a 29% cut if Kyoto was not implemented by 2010. If a country exceeds their target, then they can sell carbon credits (at about $30-40/ton in the US and $70-80/ton in Europe), if they're under, they can buy credits.


    The second round of Kyoto starts in 2012 and will try to lure in those emerging countries like China and India. The omission of China and India is the big reason why the US isn't going for Kyoto.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @09:42AM (#11687881)
    You can't cite one highly suspect website and make up the claim that there's a "consenus" where none exists in your favor.

    then how about a whole bunch of peer reviewed articles [google.com]

  • by bombadillo (706765) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @09:59AM (#11688020)
    Mod Parent up. Hemp's possibilities in manufacturing are starting to be re-discovered. I know that Europe, Canada and the UK are starting to embrace hemp into their economies. The US has remained a little in the dark. I think hemp is still illegal to grow in the US. In other countries Hemp is being used for food, paper, clothes , plastics, etc... The best thing is that it grows like a weed. Forgive the pun and don't get Hemp confused with it's sister plant. Hemp needs very little chemicals to allow it to grow and its rate of replenishment is yearly. Compared to trees which take 20 years to rotate. Amazing that the one of the largest cash crops in the US just under 100 years ago is forgotten and illegal today.
  • Re:Bush and Kyoto (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:01AM (#11688034)
    What a bunch of self-righteous crap. If Ontario is so clean, why do we have some of the continents largest polluters (Inco, Stelco), and why did NY have to complain about our air pollution (from Nanticoke especially http://www.greatlakesdirectory.org/ny/050303_great _lakes.htm)

    Canada may have signed Kyoto, but they've done nothing about it and have no current plan to meet the requirements.

    Nanticoke does not produce anywhere near enough electricity for Toronto (I work in the power systems field). That honor goes to our nuclear plants at Pickering, Darlington and Bruce.
  • Re:Smoke Screen (Score:4, Informative)

    by jrumney (197329) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:02AM (#11688038) Homepage
    So let me get this straight, you want the United States to sign a treaty that would require them to buy "points" from other countries just so they can be in compliance with it?

    The only country that looks like it will be required to buy points due to unmeetable targets is Japan, having already dealt with its pollution and emissions problems in the 1970s and '80s.

    The US has by far the highest emissions output in absolute terms and per capita and it is growing at an alarming rate exceeded by only Canada and Australia, while the rest of the world is reducing theirs. There is plenty of room for reduction there, just no will to do anything about it.

  • Kyoto DOA in America (Score:2, Informative)

    by folstaff (853243) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:03AM (#11688050) Journal
    For those of you who skipped civics, the Senate would have to ratify the treaty and during the Clinton administration they voted 99-0 in a symbolic vote against it. It is a dead issue and beating it again isn't going to change anything.
  • by Lorenzarius (765215) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:10AM (#11688118)
    From this official document (pdf) [unfccc.int] on the status of ratification of the Kyoto Protocol [unfccc.int], India, China and Brazil has all ratified/approved Kyoto, am I missing something here?
  • Some stats (Score:5, Informative)

    by t_allardyce (48447) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:19AM (#11688225) Journal
    Just to clarify what wasn't quite mentioned in the articles:

    Kyoto countries account for 55% of 'Greenhouse Emissions' together, and the USA accounts for 36%.

    Population wise, the USA makes up 4.6% of the world. I don't know about the combined populations of Kyoto countries but it includes the 3 greatest populations: China, India and the EU which means Kyoto countries make up at least 45% of the worlds population.

    In the worlds economy (don't know how this is calculated) the USA makes up 30% and the EU 23%, Japan 14%, China 3.2%. Which puts Kyoto countries' economies at at least 40% of the world

    Source is mostly BBC, not sure of the accuracy.
  • by zootm (850416) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:20AM (#11688227)
    Page five of this [uni.edu] has a pretty graph, seems reasonably legit (although it's only certain sources of emissions, I think it covers the major ones).
  • by fishdan (569872) * on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:22AM (#11688247) Homepage Journal
    It would be like invading Iraq. The US would do what it thought was right, regardless of the rest of the world. There would be "consequences" or "pressure" brought to bear, other than to say "we think this is right."
  • Re:Bush and Kyoto (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:23AM (#11688271)
    Although the United States signed the Kyoto Protocol, the treaty has not been ratified by the U.S. Senate. In July 1999, the United States Senate voted 95-0 to pass a resolution co-sponsored by Sen. Byrd (D-W.Va.) and Sen. Hagel (R-Neb.), which stated the Senate would not ratify the Protocol unless rapidly developing countries such as China were included in its requirements to reduce greenhouse gases. The Clinton Administration announced it would not send the treaty to the Senate for ratification.

    But of course it's Bush's fault. Sure. It's only ever been Bush's fault. Now that's Orwellian doublethink.
  • Re:Smoke Screen+ (Score:2, Informative)

    by rakjr (18074) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:23AM (#11688274)

    Actually, it is worse for America because of legislation passed by the Dems. and Clinton. The short of it is companies that could have been getting the stuff slowly in order with Kyoto were whacked off at the knees. The legislation passed said, "if you change one piece of equipment, you have to bring ALL your equipment up to emissions code X." So power plants that were running on coal did not gradually replace their equipment with more efficient/cleaner turbines and stuff because the cost was not for just the one upgrade, it was for a complete rework.

    1. Point gun at foot, 2. Pull trigger

  • Re:A plea (Score:2, Informative)

    by ajs (35943) <ajs@ a j s . c om> on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:24AM (#11688275) Homepage Journal
    Michael Crichton gave an excellent speech [crichton-official.com] on the topic of global warming (with the amusing title of, "Aliens Cause Global Warming") in which he pointed out the poison in the word "consensus". To quote:
    "I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks. Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you're being had.


    "Let's be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results."
    Discuss the facts all you like. Discuss findings. Discuss measurements that might hold important meaning. But if you are going to discuss consensus, then you're talking politics, not science.

    Anthropic warming is a hard topic. It's hard because it's wrapped up in our understanding of climate, and much as people would like to think that our understanding of climate is stable, it's anything but. A spike in temperatures (relative to what seemed to be normal warming previous) between the mid-1900s and today is an anomoly. Human influence is one way to explain that anomoly, and I grant that it's not a too bad as theories go. It is, however, only a theory. Other theories include the idea that warming has various step-functions related to solar influence, and that we may be observing such an event common to this sort of period between ice-ages.

    To make warming our number-one hot political topic for the environment distracts us from some HUGELY important topics, so I (and some others like me) would just like to be a bit more certain before we take pulic focus off of the things that kill millions of people every year.
  • Re:Bush and Kyoto (Score:2, Informative)

    by Mr. Arbusto (300950) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .kcuhcemirpeht.> on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:31AM (#11688343) Journal
    I don't know if you're American but their are somethings you should know about the US and Kyoto.

    1. The Senate must ratify international treaties and didn't ratify Kyoto. Not by a little, but by an ultra majority.
    2. Bush will not be president in 2009

    Notes on DC

    1. DC isn't a happy looking city, I agree
    2. Thank you, for your opinion as to why there was cloud cover. It was really cold this winter, it must be global cooling. I've seen serveral Tornatos. When I'm in the mountians sometimes the clouds cover everything and I can't see the base of the mountian, or even 1 meter infront of me. It is even brown, I think it came there from DC.

    Non US and Kyoto

    1. Nuclear, please, I want it. It won't blowup, the russians won't kill us with it.
    2. Coal Plant + Garbage = /me Happy
    3. The Solution to pollution is dillution

    You're not worth proof reading.
  • Re:only scientists (Score:3, Informative)

    by Flaming Foobar (597181) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:41AM (#11688441)
    Bjorn Lomborg

    ...who is laughing all the way to the bank... [time.com]

    Stephen McInthyre

    ...who is funded by Exxon. He's part of the same gang as Soon, Baliunas, LeGates et al either funded by Bush administration, American Petroleum Institute, the coal industry or whatever...

    On the other hand, there are literally hundreds of thousands of real scientists (not just people dubbing themselves 'doctor' or 'climatologist' or whatever), who all seem to agree that yes, the globe is warming at an alarming rate and that it's pretty much too late now. It doesn't mean we shouldn't cut our losses, however.

  • by jcupitt65 (68879) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:46AM (#11688489)
    Here's a good article from New Scientist (the UK's equivalent to Scientific American, more or less) on Climate change: Menace or myth? [newscientist.com].

    There is a scientific consensus, and it doesn't agree with you.

  • Counters (Score:2, Informative)

    by oneandoneis2 (777721) * on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:54AM (#11688562) Homepage
    Junk Science [junkscience.com] has a couple of counters up, one detailing Kyoto's costs and one the benefits it's estimated to provide. You may find them interesting. . .
  • by t_allardyce (48447) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:56AM (#11688580) Journal
    Currently:
    USA: CO2: 24%, Population: 4.6%
    China: CO2: 13%, Population: 21%
    India: CO2: 4%, Population: 17%

    Damn lameness filter
  • Consensus? (Score:3, Informative)

    by phlegmofdiscontent (459470) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:57AM (#11688583)
    Funny, I read the Wikipedia article and it doesn't look like there's much of a consensus at all. In fact, it looks like there is so much that we don't know that to definitively state anything about climate change is to speak from one's lowest sphincter.
  • Re:Parent is correct (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @10:59AM (#11688602)
    Disclaimer: I am one of said scientists. -But I prefer to remain anonymous here. Please mod down the above two trolls! There most certainly is a scientific consensus about the fact that the anthropogenic greenhouse effect is real and will heat up the Earth significantly in the future. True, there is some discussion about how significant the recent global warming is when compared to natural variability (though I will still claim that there is a consensus); but the number of scientists claiming that society will not heat up the Earth in the future is quite small. The claims that I and hundreds of colleagues would spend our entire careers knowingly producing bogus science to keep meagre government salaries (I am European), well, let's say they are wrong. I may of course just be left out of the inner circle... BTW, I can assure you that plenty of funding is available for the people that do not agree with setting limits on economic growth. Of course, this is not an issue that can be decided by referendum; the science behind global warming is well founded. If you want to learn more about this science, please have a look at http://www.ipcc.ch/ [www.ipcc.ch], e.g. the technical summary of the WG1 report, or follow the more up-to-date discussion at http://realclimate.org/ [realclimate.org]. The latter is run by climate scientists and discusses the science in connection with media talk about climate change.
  • by stupidfoo (836212) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @11:04AM (#11688651)
    And the treaty is based on levels established in 1992. Russia signed on only because they will make billions selling their polution credits.

    It had absolutely nothing to do with the treaty having any sort of merit.
  • by terjeber (856226) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @11:09AM (#11688702)

    Science deals with theories and their (in)validation. Consensus is an irrelevant, and quite idiotic, term typically used by people who like the current state of affairs and prefer not to deal with things such as methodology. Typically (even) scientists (the consensus) have ridiculed new ideas when they have diverged from the "well known" state of affairs.

    The theory that human activities are contributing to the global warming is generally accepted as validated by all scientists (who deal with the matter). How much of the increase is caused by humans and how much i natural variation there is no consensus whatsoever on. Not even close.

    The consern among scientists who are skeptical to the Kyoto agreement is not as the most vocal environmentalists claim, that kyoto is trying to solve a non-existing problem, but that the solutions proposed by Kyoto, are not going to slow down global warming by any measurable factor since the part of the warming we see that is caused by GHG is lower than "consensus" claims, and that the Kyoto agreement provisions will have no real effect. With the kost of Kyoto being very high, perhaps (these scientists say) we should look at other, and more cost-efficient alternatives.

    Sadly religious fever have gripped the community on this issue, and sane debate is impossible, as can be seen by the insane attacks on, for example, Bjorn Lomborg.

  • by sheck (37769) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @11:25AM (#11688809) Homepage
    According to Jack Herer [jackherer.com], the number is much lower:
    Farming only 6% of continential U.S. acreage with biomass crops would provide all of America's gas and oil energy needs, ending dependence upon fossil fuels.


    Manahan, Stanley E., Environmental Chemistry, 4th edition.
    I haven't checked his citation.
  • Re:One more thing... (Score:3, Informative)

    by Laur (673497) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @12:07PM (#11689170)
    I believe that one day we _will_ all be driving electrical cars because there simply isn't any oil left to burn.

    And where will the electricity come from, all those clean burning coal plants we currently use? Besides, electric cars are crap. They have no range and take forever to recharge. Meanwhile, my current car goes 300 miles on one tank and takes about 5 minutes to refuel. Electric cars won't get any better either unless there is a breakthrough in battery technology, unlikely since there's really only so much you can do, the energy density just isn't there. Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles (maybe that's what you mean by electric) aren't much better, hydrogen storage is not an easy thing, there is no infrastructure in place, and you still have the problem of producing the hydrogen.

    IMHO the best solution is biomass, either bioethanol [energy.gov] or biodiesel. These are compatible with existing technologies (all Windows users know how important backwards compatibility is) and they can be used right now (no fantastic technological breakthroughs required). I don't understand why programs like this are not being pursued more aggressively.

  • by Pentagram (40862) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @12:12PM (#11689222) Homepage
    Keep in mind that most of the US lives much, much more sparsely than Europeans.

    CO2 emissions:

    USA 5,410 million tons (20.1 tons per capita)
    EU 3,171 million tons (8.5 tons per capita)

    Care to justify your statement?
  • by dfenstrate (202098) * <dfenstrate@gm a i l .com> on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @12:22PM (#11689326)
    always slightly worried about the waste by-products of nuclear power stations, over and beyond the stuff they use for nuclear bombs. With a half-life of how long? Thousands of years? Millions? Would you like a radioactive waste dump on your door-step?

    The longer the half life is, the less radioactive it is, and hence, the less dangerous. Think about it. If something's really radioactively 'hot', it'll decay all it's going to decay within minutes to weeks. If you're around it during that time period, you're fucked.

    If something decays very slowly, the dose it gives is very low- it just says that way for a long, long time.

    And the obvious solution to avoiding radiation dose from waste.... STAY AWAY FROM IT.

    I work at a nuke plant. In a couple years we'll be putting 15 year old used fuel in huge casks and storing them outside because our spent fuel pool is getting full.

    Considering that, as a nuke worker, I'm well aware of the dose rates given off by heavily shielded used fuel (basically nothing), and the health effects of certain dose thresholds.....

    I'd WOULD let them store it in my back yard for the right $$$.
  • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @12:25PM (#11689364)
    That surrounds the global warming thing, take a look at Bjorn Lomborg, and specificly his book The Skeptical Environmentalist. This book, and Penn Gillette said, pissed off environmentalists more than a Ford Excursion with only one person in it.

    Basically Lomborg went and analized all the environmental data that the popular environmental movement had been screaming about to see if it supported their conclusion. He concluded it did not, and wrote a book about it called The Skeptical Environmentalist which taked about all this and accused the environmentalists to cherry picking their data and ignoring results that didn't support their conclusion.

    Well as you might imagine, the environmentalists weren't happy about this and attacked him on all sides. Eventually, it got brought up before the Danish Committees on Scientific Dishonesty. They investigated Lomborg's work and concluded that he had done just what he was accusing people of: selectivley grabbing data, failing to exercise proper scientific rigor, and basically ignoring things that didn't agree with his conclusion. They called his work "systematically one-sided".

    However that's not the end, in 2003, the Danish Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation found that, indeed, the DCSD was guilty of just what they were on Lomberg's case about. They'd taken a single critique of his work, relied on it as fact without any validation or consideration of rebuttals. In 2004 the case was ended against Lomborg.

    Now the point here isn't to try and claim that either side is correct because, honestly, I don't know. The point is to show the amount of politics flying around in this, and the difficulty in getting a straight answer on anything. There is a clear disagreement about how to interpret the data we do have, and lots of name calling and sleight of hand going on.

    Anyone who thinks they have the complete, cut and dried view on this situation is wrong. As the parent noted, science isn't free of politics and here you can see it in action.
  • by dunstan (97493) <dvavasourNO@SPAMiee.org> on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @12:27PM (#11689394) Homepage
    Kyoto may be a start, but one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse emissions is aviation. Yet Kyoto specifically excludes international aviation.

    This favours small countries (such as GB) with little domestic aviation over large countries (such as the US, Russia, China, etc) where much of the aviation is domestic.

    Personally I would have all aviation, domestic or internation, included.
  • Re:Greenland (Score:3, Informative)

    by dunstan (97493) <dvavasourNO@SPAMiee.org> on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @12:31PM (#11689443) Homepage
    That's not actually true, but it is true that conditions in the far North weren't as bad 1,000 years ago. Indeed, it's thought that the vikings had colonies across Newfoundland and down into Maine which were lost when the Arctic extended southwards.

    But our lack of understanding of how our climate works and of how ocean current affect both local and global climates means that we can all argue about this for years t come.
  • by Peter La Casse (3992) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @12:59PM (#11689764) Homepage
    Keep in mind that most of the US lives much, much more sparsely than Europeans.

    CO2 emissions:

    USA 5,410 million tons (20.1 tons per capita)
    EU 3,171 million tons (8.5 tons per capita)

    Care to justify your statement?

    The next two sentences justified the statement:

    Keep in mind that most of the US lives much, much more sparsely than Europeans. They are not (for the most part) crowded into dense polluted cities. They are spead out over rural areas with clean air, clean water, and blue skies.

    In other words, the parent poster claimed that the U.S. population is more evenly distributed than the European population.

  • by Spl0it (541008) <spl0it@msn.com> on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @01:50PM (#11690420) Homepage
    Actually Canada has already started a campaign to reduce pollution. It's called the One Tonne Challenge [climatechange.gc.ca] and challenges all members of society to reduce their pollution by 1 Tonne! If you are going to try and signal out Canada and Japan at least be accurate.. maybe you should double check your information on Japan?
  • by BBird (664014) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @01:50PM (#11690430)

    The US signed the treaty but never ratified

    They even commit to 7% reduction.

    Check it out here [unfccc.int]

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @03:16PM (#11691472)
    "Canada, one of the treaty's first signatories, has no clear plan for reaching its target emission cuts. Far from cutting back, its emissions have increased by 20% since 1990."

    Canada's population increased 10% during this period which accounts for much of the emission increase. In addition we were not making substatial efforts to curb emissions during this time period, we have only started to act on emission reduction recently.

    The One-Tonne Challenge
    http://www.climatechange.gc.ca/onetonne /english/

    There is no "clear plan" to achieve a 6% reduction of 1990 emmissions by 2012 because it is probably impossible. What really counts is that we are actually trying to do something about emission reductions.

    The government has a hundreds of incentive and rebate plans to replace inefficent furnices and appliances. (Click Incentives and Rebates)

    For example, BC Hydro was giving out free compact florencent light bulbs to everyone in the entire province to reduce energy consumption.

    In addition the government is toughening up building codes and requiring better insulation.

    The government is also advertising and educating the public on ways to reduce emissions.

    Cars like the SmartCar FourTwo are welcomed in Canada.
    http://www.smartcar.ca/go/portal_External .asp?strH TTP_Refer=http://www.smartcar.ca/go/home.asp&TempL inkID=61&LinkName=Fortwo%20Coupe&URL=http://www.th esmart.ca/index.cfm?ID=3352

    Mercedes was unwilling to sell this car in the US because of the lack of interest. Mercedes plan to sell thier less fuel efficient SUV model for the US market.

    "IMO its pretty much a joke."
    Now I see why the US isn't a participant.

  • by Idarubicin (579475) <allsquiet@hotmail3.14.com minus pi> on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @03:55PM (#11692020) Journal
    There has yet to be a reputable study that has concluded that second hand smoke causes cancer. You can google for further discussion on this.

    I'm not sure if that is true. One of the sibling posts to this one provides a link to a full-on prospective study which confirms environmental tobacco smoke is a risk factor for lung cancer and other respiratory diseases. It's a January 2005 publication, so I don't blame you for not seeing it before.

    I would also argue that elements of tobacco smoke are known carcinogens. To take one example, a lot of recent work has demonstrated that polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) like benzo[a]pyrene causes specific mutations to the p53 gene which are identical to mutations found in cancers of the lung and other organs (abstract [nih.gov]). It's very difficult to tease out all the different factors at work in an epidemiological study, but it doesn't seem unreasonable to suggest:

    PAHs are present in tobacco smoke;

    p53 is mutated in ~60% of human lung cancers;

    p53 mutations mostly occur at a few 'hotspots';

    PAHs bind to and disrupt the p53 gene at the same sites as mutations are observed;

    PAHs cause cancer in rats;

    Therefore it is likely that cigarette smoke can cause oncogenic (cancer-inducing) mutations.

    Yes, there are questions about the relative effect of these compounds compared to other environmental carcinogens. Based on the evidence available, it would seem that the burden is on the tobacco industry to demonstrate that these known mutagenic compounds don't cause cancer in this particular case.

    I would put global warming due to anthropogenic carbon dioxide in roughly the same category. The reasoning seems sound, there's a lot of circumstantial evidence, and we should probably act on a preemptive strategy of harm reduction.

  • by bobscealy (830639) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @07:09PM (#11694222)
    Our PM has a bit of a history of making statements that are not based on fact to advance his political career and win votes. Part of his reluctance to admit any kind of environmental responsibility revolves about maintaining the support of electorates that rely heavily on logging and coal mining.
  • Albedo (Score:3, Informative)

    by Mittermeyer (195358) on Wednesday February 16, 2005 @08:47PM (#11695150) Homepage
    Not a single one of you talked about the REAL energy altering systemic change mankind has brought to the table, and that is albedo.

    The reflectivity from all of that urbanization is pouring huge amounts of energy right back into the atmosphere that otherwise would have been absorbed.

    Anyone who lives in a flyover state in a large metropolitan area knows that storms end up going around the big towns unless they have a lot of energy.

    I have a tough time accepting these simulations due to albedo not being a major factor.
  • by TriadMage (629351) on Thursday February 17, 2005 @01:35AM (#11697045)
    All three of the countries named ARE part of the Kyoto Protocol. According to the list of countries in the Status of Ratification of the Kyoto Protocol [Available here [unfccc.int] [pdf] from the UN's Fram,ework Convention on Climate Change site, the status of these countries (as of 2nd February 2005) is as follows:
    • India: Accession
    • Brazil: Ratification
    • China: Approval

"Card readers? We don't need no stinking card readers." -- Peter da Silva (at the National Academy of Sciencies, 1965, in a particularly vivid fantasy)

Working...