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of global warming are of concern both for the environment and human
life. Scenarios studied by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change
(IPCC) predict that global warming will continue and get worse much
faster than was expected even in their last report.
Research by NOAA indicate that the effects of global warming are already irreversible. The IPCC reports attribute many specific natural phenomena to human causes. The expected long range effects of recent climate change may already be observed.
Rising sea levels, glacier retreat, Arctic shrinkage, and altered patterns of agriculture are cited as direct consequences of human activities. Predictions for secondary and regional effects include extreme weather events, an expansion of tropical diseases, changes in the timing of seasonal patterns in ecosystems, and drastic economic impact.
The Kyoto Protocol and Global Warming
The Kyoto Protocol was set up in a session of the United Nations in Japan in the year 1997. This initiative was set forth to reduce harmful emissions and to lessen global warming. It was adopted and contains goals for emissions that are legally binding for the countries involved.
The aim of the Kyoto Protocol is to prevent countries from causing global warming through human activity. There are some natural forces that contribute to global warming. However, it is the disruption of the climate by humans that is most damaging. This is what is addressed in the Kyoto Protocol.
The developed countries of the world have made commitments to reducing emissions in a timely manner. They have target dates and set levels they are supposed to reach by those times.
There are six greenhouse gases that are meant to be reduced by 5% in the next few years. Three of these are carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide. If these countries are successful, it will reduce global warming.
It is interesting that, while many countries have agreed to reduce emissions, some countries will be allowed to raise emissions. These countries are Norway, Australia, and Iceland. These countries control global warming by keeping their increases to a certain level.
Other countries are asked to simply maintain the levels of emissions they already have. Countries such as Russia, Ukraine, and New Zealand do their part against global warming by maintaining the status quo.
The goals of the Kyoto Protocol to decrease global warming are supposed to be realized between the years 2008-2012.
It seems that this will be a near impossibility at this point for many countries. The US especially is turning its back on the provisions of the Kyoto Protocol. The initiative is given lip service by the powers that be, but real progress has been slow coming.
One way developed countries can receive credit under the Kyoto protocol is to help others. If developed countries sponsor emissions reducing programs in developing countries, they receive credit for this. It shows their commitment to the reduction of global warming.
Yet, not all developed countries have adopted the Kyoto Protocol. One glaring example is the US. As of December 2006, the US was one of the 169 governments that had signed the agreement to cut down on global warming. However, it did not ratify the agreement, so the treaty has no power in the US. Another hold-out was Australia.
There were two conditions that needed to be met to put this treaty into full legal force. One was that 55 countries needed to sign up. That condition was met in 2002. In 2005, the other condition was met when 55% of the developed countries had joined the effort to stop global warming.
The Kyoto Protocol was designed to hold developed countries up to a high standard. Developed countries are not only expected to create ways to reduce global warming. They are also rewarded if they help other countries to do the same. When every developed country joins in the struggle to reduce global warming, the earth will reap the benefits.
More ArticlesWhat Can Nations Do To Combat Global Warming
... altogether. Tax incentives and government subsidies can also encourage people to think about global warming. The only problem is that this approach usually favors those who have more money in the first place. Governments can make it their business to inform and educate the people of the country. With ...
... were sent out. Mayors across the country had the chance to accept entrance into this group. The letter was sent out on March 30, 2005, and the acceptances soon started pouring in. Mayors, it seemed, did want to do something about global warming. By June 13th of that year, the US Conference of Mayors met ...
... documentaries about global warming. Others are simply using their influence to make a statement. One project is designed to help people become more informed about and involved with global warming. The venture is called Global Cool, and its lofty goal is to get one billion people to lower the levels of ...
... was a .2 rise in the sea level during the past century and humans did not even seem to notice. When the global warming pundits talk about the rises in sea level that result from three sheets of ice that melt per year, it is the opponents of the movement that put it into terms that make sense. If the ice ...
... Alternative to Extinction. That alone should explain how dramatic this movie is. The solutions to global warming are equally dramatic. Not exactly a traditional movie, Dr. Elisabet Sahtouris' Crisis as Opportunity: Living Better on a Hotter Planet is unique. Instead of being distraught and woeful, Sahtouris ...
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