Kyoto Crunch; Dozens of Countries Compelled to Cut Emissions under New Pact

The Washington Times (Washington, DC), February 16, 2005 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Kyoto Crunch; Dozens of Countries Compelled to Cut Emissions under New Pact

Byline: Jeffrey Sparshott, THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The Kyoto Protocol beginning today legally binds 35 countries - though not the United States - to reduce emissions of gases that contribute to global warming.

"The 16th of February ... marks the beginning of a new era in international efforts to reduce the risk of climate change," said Joke Waller-Hunter, executive secretary of the U.N. Climate Change Secretariat, the bureaucracy for Kyoto.

The 25 members of the European Union, Japan and other participants see the treaty as a first, small step toward combating global warming. The Bush administration says it would be a misstep that would stunt economic growth at home and shift polluting factories abroad.

The disagreements on the science and immediate goals embodied in the pact led the U.S. Senate to vote against ratifying Kyoto, and President Bush in 2001 formally backed away from the treaty.

Australia is the other major developed economy to discard the agreement. China, India and other developing nations do not have to reduce emissions as part of the United Nations-brokered agreement.

So while some of the world will mark Kyoto during a series of small ceremonies, the pact will not be celebrated in official Washington.

"We do not see the Kyoto Protocol as having an impact on U.S. climate-change policy. We work with and engage countries, that have supported the Kyoto Protocol and have not supported the Kyoto Protocol, in a wide variety of initiatives," said Paula Dobriansky, the State Department's undersecretary for global affairs, the office that oversees international, environmental and scientific efforts.

Nations meeting in Kyoto, Japan, drew up the climate protocol in 1997 amid rising concern that greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane, were accumulating in the atmosphere and causing air and ocean temperatures to rise.

The Kyoto Protocol calls for rich nations to limit greenhouse gas emissions below 1990 levels. The United States, for example, accepted a 7 percent reduction by 2012, a goal later abandoned.

Instead, the administration is working on a series of programs that rely on market incentives and technology to slow the rate of greenhouse gas emissions, such as energy-related tax breaks, funding for hydrogen fuel development and climate research, and voluntary international initiatives.

"When I look around the world what I see is the portfolio the U.S. put on the table domestically equals or exceeds what the other nations of the world are doing. And there's a heck of a lot of common ground in terms of measures that are actually being implemented," said James L.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Cite this article

Cited article

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Kyoto Crunch; Dozens of Countries Compelled to Cut Emissions under New Pact


Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?