The United Nations met last week in Vienna and agreed on recognizing the target set by the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). They thus made the first step toward action.
The target agreed upon mentions a decrease of 25 to 40 percent of global greenhouse gases by 2020.
This meeting was preparing the Bali discussions of December where the United Nations will begin talks for the Kyoto Protocol successor.
As the AFP states it:
Parties to the UN’s Kyoto Protocol wound up troubled talks here Friday with broad pledges, but no specific commitments, to deepen cuts in greenhouse-gas emissions blamed for global warming.
In a final document issued after hours of wrangling, they ditched a proposed text whereby industrialized countries would consider cutting their emissions by 25-40 percent by 2020 compared to their 1990 levels, diplomats said.
The goal had been spelt out in a draft statement backed by countries of the European Union but opposed by other delegations, notably Canada, Japan, Switzerland, New Zealand and Russia, they said.
Albeit the pessimistic approach of the AFP press release, I am quite optimistic as the negotiations for post Kyoto are going in the right direction, ie. countries agree on large decreases of greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions.
Indeed, as the WWF notes :
“In 2007 we have seen a surge in public support for political action against climate change,” says Hans Verolme, Director of WWF’s Global Climate Change Programme. “Smart politicians will translate this tremendous public support for a clean future into action today.”
Of course, some countries are still not totally convinced by the importance of cutting GHG emissions and keep on seeking immediate profits despite the risks of huge economic recession later.
But still, more and more countries are caring about defined targets and schedule beyond the end of the Kyoto Protocol.
More than this, 25 to 40 percent of GHG reduction by 2020 would represent a good move toward the decrease of 50 percent by 2050. The latter figure was given by the IPCC as the minimum that should be reached in order to avoid massive troubles.
Only a few months ago the United States were disagreeing on cutting greenhouse gases emissions but it seems that the Federal Government is now changing its mind.
Meanwhile, it developing nations are increasingly worried by climate change and the negative effects it would have on both their populations and economies.
Indeed, Indonesia is working on a future agreement that would protect 80 percent of total rainforests.
These talks would include eight countries : Brazil, Cameroon, Congo, Costa Rica, Gabon, Indonesia, Malaysia and Papua New Guinea. Of course, more countries could join afterward. (see related AFP news)
On this topic, the AFP states the following :
Indonesia is believed to be the world’s third largest producer of carbon emissions largely due to forest fires and massive illegal logging across the archipelago nation.
So the fact that the goverment of this country is willing to partake in the mitigation of climate change is very good news. Now remain to see if those speeches will lead to action.
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