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Author Topic: Bali Climate Change Conference opens
Noah_Scape
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posted 04 December 2007 11:32 AM      Profile for Noah_Scape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Expectations for the Bali Climate Change Conference:
quote:

At a pre-conference press briefing held in Bali this afternoon, UNFCCC Executive Secretary, Yvo de Boer, said that this thirteenth Conference on Climate Change brings to an end an incredible year in climate change science and politics. He referred to the recent reports by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) which laid to rest any doubt that climate change is happening and that it is caused by rising greenhouse gas emissions resulting from human activity. Although the reports contain catastrophic projections if climate change is allowed to continue unchecked, ”a large part of the solution is available to us today, what we need is political will,” said Mr. de Boer, adding ”the big question for me is: Ministers, what is your political answer to what the scientific community is telling you so very clearly?”

On the political front, Mr. De Boer spoke of the emerging momentum which began early in the year with President Bush’s State of the Union address in which he indicated that climate change is a global issue requiring a global response. This was followed by the European Union’s courageous commitment to reduce emissions by 20% by 2020; exactly the signal developing countries were seeking from the north. The G8 then called for negotiations on a future climate deal to be concluded by 2009, and at an unprecedented High-Level Event at United Nations Headquarters in New York in September, many world leaders called for a breakthrough in Bali on a long-term climate change regime. Mr. De Boer pointed out that Ministers attending the Bali Conference will therefore have to respond not only to the scientific community, but also to the call made by their political leaders in New York.

The issue is being made all the more urgent by the already visible evidence of climate change, particularly in developing countries. Impacts such as intensified drought and rainfall, melting glaciers and rising sea levels, however, are helping raise public awareness of climate change and therefore support for politicians to take action, said Mr. de Boer. He also pointed out that Asia will be among the worst affected regions. Projected impacts include an increase of 10 to 20% in tropical cyclone intensity and more frequent heatwaves like the one in India in 2002 which killed over 1000 people. Rising sea levels will also threaten millions of Asians, with over half of the population in 21 Asian countries living in high-risk areas.

”An important focus of the Bali conference will be how to take a long-term climate change regime forward,” Mr. de Boer said. He explained that the aim is threefold: to agree to formally launch negotiations on a long-term climate regime, to set an agenda for the negotiations and to agree on an end date for negotiations in order to avoid a gap between the Kyoto Protocol and whatever follows. Reversing Neil Armstrong's words when he landed on the moon, Mr. de Boer described the Protocol as ”a giant leap for man and a small step for mankind” and said that its achievement has been to provide an important architecture for whatever follows.

The agenda, meanwhile, is expected to constitute four main building blocks: mitigation - action to limit or reduce emissions; adaptation - putting in place a strategy to help developing countries adapt to the impacts of climate change; technology – helping countries limit or reduce emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change through the supply of techology; and finance - generating investment and financial flows which will allow developing countries to act on mitigation and adaptation without harming their primary goals of economic growth and poverty eradication.

Other important agenda items will include deforestation, which is recognized as a key driver of climate change, accounting for up to 20% of global CO2 emissions. The aim will be to launch pilot projects in developing countries that will enhance their capacity to reduce emissions from deforestation. A further important topic will be the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM), one of the three innovative mechanisms under the Kyoto Protocol which offers rich countries the choice of reducing emissions at home or in developing countries, with benefits to both parties.

“I sense an incredible growing international awareness of the importance of climate change and recognition among the general public that politicans need to come to grips with this issue, “ Mr. de Boer said. “Millions of people around the world will be focusing their attention on what will be the response of the politicians to that very clear message given to them by the scientific community.“


Expectations for the Bali Climate Change Conference


From: B.C. | Registered: Oct 2007  |  IP: Logged
EmmaG
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posted 04 December 2007 11:37 AM      Profile for EmmaG        Edit/Delete Post
My first expectation was that the delegates would try and show some restraint and leadership around the need to reduce consumption, etc.

Instead, we have 10,000+ delegates flying from around the world on jumbo jets and emitting 100,000 extra tons of CO2. Not off to a great start.


From: nova scotia | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged
The Wizard of Socialism
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posted 04 December 2007 11:39 AM      Profile for The Wizard of Socialism   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
They're kick'in it, Al Gore Style. Livin' Large.
From: A Proud Canadian! | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
EmmaG
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posted 04 December 2007 11:43 AM      Profile for EmmaG        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by The Wizard of Socialism:
They're kick'in it, Al Gore Style. Livin' Large.


From: nova scotia | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 04 December 2007 11:48 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I think things need to change in that respect. People have to start realizing that having huge conferences in one place in the world that everyone flies to in order to discuss environmental issues is not okay. It's not just "oh well, we only do it once in a while". It's not okay AT ALL.

This is basically a junket. A fantastic one, I'll give you that, and one where a great many ideas will be shared and all. But the critics are right - we're not going to save the world by jetting off to this destination and that.

Organizing has to happen at home. It's not as exciting, definitely. But if people are serious about ecosocialism and cleaning up the environment, then we have to start thinking of ways to do it where we are.


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Frustrated Mess
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posted 04 December 2007 11:53 AM      Profile for Frustrated Mess   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
It is not about saving the world. It is about process. Bush, Harper, China, India, and others will ensure nothing comes out of the process other than some reassuring words. Which I'm sure will bring much joy to the Wiz and little dog EmmaG, too.
From: doom without the gloom | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
EmmaG
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posted 04 December 2007 12:00 PM      Profile for EmmaG        Edit/Delete Post
Definitely, Michelle. One thing that really drives me nuts is when people say "so and so is such a great environmentalist" followed by "she just got back from travelling in Asia".

Flying around the world on jumbo jets isn't sustainable. There are low emission and zero emission cars (although the sustainability of using other energy to generate hydrogen or clear-cutting forests for palm oil is debatable), however planes currently only burn oil and lots of it.

I encourage all babblers to try eating locally as much as possible this year and really consider the true cost of all products. Tropical fruit in the winter creates high emissions. Said this elsewhere, but I am loving my local organic veggie box (which also has organic local tofu . Some days I crave a banana etc., but locally-grown apples and preserved berries fulfill my needs just fine. Planning your recipes around what's available locally also becomes fun after you try it.

(sorry for the thread drift - I should start a thread on green cabbage recipes, lol)


From: nova scotia | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged
EmmaG
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posted 04 December 2007 12:01 PM      Profile for EmmaG        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Frustrated Mess:
It is not about saving the world. It is about process. Bush, Harper, China, India, and others will ensure nothing comes out of the process other than some reassuring words. Which I'm sure will bring much joy to the Wiz and little dog EmmaG, too.

Why can't the process be sustainable and environmentally-friendly? Why should government delegates get to fly around the world to luxury locations, while telling the rest of us that we need to stop living in that manner?


From: nova scotia | Registered: May 2006  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 04 December 2007 12:06 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
FM, could you please refrain from calling women on babble, even ones you disagree with, "little dogs"? That would be superb.

P.S. Men too, of course.

[ 04 December 2007: Message edited by: Michelle ]


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Frustrated Mess
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posted 04 December 2007 12:17 PM      Profile for Frustrated Mess   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Why can't the process be sustainable and environmentally-friendly? Why should government delegates get to fly around the world to luxury locations, while telling the rest of us that we need to stop living in that manner?

I really don't think you give a shit. I really do think you'd rather natter on about how Gore gets from point 'A' to point 'B' than discuss any substance related to the actual issue. That is my opinion, of course, and you did ask.

From: doom without the gloom | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 04 December 2007 01:07 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:

EmmaG:
Flying around the world on jumbo jets isn't sustainable.

Actually it isn't flying that is not sustainable, it is how much flying combined with other activities that isn't.

The planet can tolerate a certain level of exploitation and remain sustainable. Going over that level is killing us. How we divide up the permissible exploitation is the question.

At this point, although it would cause a different set of problems, we could address some of the environmental ones by grounding all aircraft except for those used for humanitarian and security purposes.

It would help even more if in addition we halted all maritime traffic in the same way except for wind or current driven transport.

quote:

Why should government delegates get to fly around the world to luxury locations, while telling the rest of us that we need to stop living in that manner?

Why should anybody be flying anywhere until global consumption is brought down to or below the sustainable level, and more equally apportioned among the inhabitants, human and other, of the planet?


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 09 December 2007 05:52 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Anyhow, back on topic.

quote:
Leaked Canadian instructions to its negotiators at the Bali climate change conference have angered non governmental and environments groups who see them as an attempt to divide the developing nations and dilute its own commitments to reduce emissions.

The 9-point instruction, leaked to the Canadian press and secured by some NGOs, aim at separating any real obligation from the post-2012 agreement by suggesting countries make climate change integral to their development assistance programme and it must be integral to the work of Word Bank with no apparent funding from the protocol, the groups said.

The government guidance asks its negotiators to work for binding emission reduction targets for all major emitters, including developing countries. "Developed countries should be required to take action more quickly but major industrialised developing countries should also have binding targets."

The reference to India and China is clear, the groups argued terming it as "an attempt to derail the talks which are just entering the crucial phase".

Though nations like India and China need to significantly slow their emissions growth, they should not, in the near term, be subject to the absolute emission reduction targets that are appropriate for industrialised countries, they said and pointed out that Canada's per-capita emissions and wealth are about 10 times higher than India's and five times higher than China's.


It's another proud day to be Canadian.


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 09 December 2007 06:21 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Although this is of course horrifying and demands that all Canadians unite in opposition to what this government is doing on the world climate change scene, I am reluctant to comment any more than this. Every thread on this topic tends to degenerate into a partisan slugfest as to whether the Conservatives and Liberals are equally evil or one is more evil than the other. That narrowminded attitude has helped Harper escape any political consequences for his Bushite stand, allowed the environment to drop from the political radar screen almost entirely (since last year when it overtook health care), and has led to a situation where even the NDP makes statements that ignore Kyoto (which Parliament has adopted as legally binding) and which are roughly compatible with Harper and Dion's vague generalities.

[ 09 December 2007: Message edited by: unionist ]


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 09 December 2007 06:56 AM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Indigenous Peoples shut out of Bali
quote:
Indigenous peoples representing regions from around the world protested outside the climate negotiations [Dec. 7] wearing symbolic gags that read UNFCCC, the acronym of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, symbolizing their systematic exclusion from the UN meeting.

Yesterday a delegation of indigenous peoples was forcibly barred from entering the meeting between UNFCCC Executive Secretary Yvo de Boer and civil society representatives, despite the fact that the indigenous delegation was invited to attend. This act is representative of the systematic exclusion of indigenous peoples in the UNFCCC process.

“There is no seat or name plate for indigenous peoples in the plenary, nor for the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, the highest level body in the United Nations that addresses indigenous peoples rights,” stated Hubertus Samangun, the Focal Point of the Indigenous Peoples delegation to the UNFCCC and the Focal Point for English Speaking Indigenous Peoples of the Global Forest Coalition.

“Indigenous peoples are not only marginalized from the discussion, but there is virtually no mention of indigenous peoples in the more that 5 million words of UNFCCC documents,” argued Alfred Ilenre of the Edo People of Nigeria.

This is occurring despite the fact that indigenous peoples are suffering the most from climate change and climate change mitigation projects that directly impact their lands.



From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Noah_Scape
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posted 09 December 2007 09:33 AM      Profile for Noah_Scape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I was so hopefull about this Bali meeting, but now am dismayed on so many levels.

As many of you pointed out, the emissions from flying 10,000 people to Indonesia are significant contributions to climate change in themselves. It seems that we need to find technological solutions to avoiding pollution, like having meetings done by telecommunications - a huge Netmeeting or something, perhaps.

Another problem, to me at least, is that they are talking about "Adaptation", which in this case means adapting to the changes that the GG emissions are causing. That is dangerous stuff, it allows us to keep polluting and then "move to higher ground". That, in turn, means certain death to the INDIGENOUS peoples and the [other] poor people. Allowing the wealthy - who pollute the most - to survive by ADAPTING is not a solution!!
Adaptation link from the conferance

Thanks, M Spector, for the facts on the Indigenous groups being barred...


As Jerry West suggests:

quote:
we could address some of the environmental [problems] by grounding all aircraft except for those used for humanitarian and security purposes.

Thats the kind of action that is needed to force the changes, instead of talking about "adapting". When the polluters find that they cannot do "business as usual" due to the GWcc problem, then they might start looking for real solutionjs. We could declare a global emergency and ground the aircraft until, at least, emissions are stabilized.

On that note - EMISSIONS ARE STILL INCREASING!!! We have had 17 years since the 1990's agreements in Rio etc., when we then understood that emissions of GGs are a problem, and we have yet to stabilize emissions,much less reduce them below the 1990 levels [which are too much anyhow, but are a good place to measure from]. These big meetings - like Bali now - do not seem to have ANY positive impact.

There are many workable alternatives to the way we use energy, but it is often our governments themselves that get in the way instead of being the facilitators of change... Alberta had restrictions on the amount of electricity produced from wind turbines until just this year, and immediately after those restrictions were lifted, 100s of wind turbines went up. Wind power was "viable" all along, and reduces emissions significantly by replacing coal and natural gas fired power plants.

The UN and the national governments are not the ones to do the job, apparently. Here is a link to the seemingly inarticulate and incoherent Indonesian government website for the Bali Climate Change conference [can't they find an interpreter in all those 10,000 people?]
Indonesia government website for Bali conference
[it doesn't give me much confidence about their competence or ability to communicate]


From: B.C. | Registered: Oct 2007  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 09 December 2007 10:00 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Noah_Scape:
As many of you pointed out, the emissions from flying 10,000 people to Indonesia are significant contributions to climate change in themselves.

The one-time harm is far outweighed by the extremely important fact that countries around the world almost all now give lip service - and research money and even some actual measures - to the need to combat climate change.


quote:
These big meetings - like Bali now - do not seem to have ANY positive impact.

I disagree. Meetings like this one put the United Nations years ahead of broad public consciousness on climate change. Starting in 1992, leading to the Kyoto Protocol in 1997, meetings and agreements on this scale turned climate change from an "environmentalists'" issue to one accepted almost universally, with even the most powerful opponents (the U.S. and its bootlickers) totally isolated on this score.

The unprecedented consensus that has been reached among the vast majority of the world's nations in a relatively short historical time frame must not be underestimated. That's what Bush and Harper et al want to do in order to destroy any possible framework for the future. To say that these meetings have had "no impact", even though you are on the right side, feeds their aims.

Anyway, there are impacts everywhere, as this Greenpeace communiqué confirms:

quote:
Greenpeace expressed its support for today's announcement by the government of Quebec to meet its share of Canada's Kyoto commitments. The announcement was made at the United Nations climate conference in Bali, Indonesia. The Quebec plan foresees greenhouse gas emission reductions of six per cent under 1990 levels by 2012.
"Quebec is a leader and Ottawa is a laggard," explained Dave Martin, coordinator of the Climate and Energy campaign at Greenpeace. "Three years after the Kyoto agreement came into force, Ottawa still refuses to meet its Kyoto commitment."
The measures announced by Quebec environment minister Line Beauchamp today foresee the elimination of 4.5 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions yearly by 2012. These measures cover energy efficiency, transportation, new technologies, conversion from oil to cleaner or renewable green energy, and reduced emissions from waste.

quote:
The UN and the national governments are not the ones to do the job, apparently. Here is a link to the seemingly inarticulate and incoherent Indonesian government website for the Bali Climate Change conference [can't they find an interpreter in all those 10,000 people?]

Whoa - this an Indonesian government site. Why would you crap over this? They have no obligation to even have an English section. Did you notice an Indonesian-language version of the sites promoting the 2005 Montréal conference on climate change? To cite this as "proof" that the U.N. and national governments shouldn't be entrusted with the task of combatting climate change is a bit thin. Maybe you didn't mean it that way, but why would you mention this at all?


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Noah_Scape
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posted 09 December 2007 10:57 AM      Profile for Noah_Scape     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
This just in!! -

Canadian Youth Embarrassed by Lack of Leadership by Harper in Bali

Well good, some Canadian youth found their way to Bali. I suppose they also took an airplane ride there, but at least they are pointing out the farcical performance by the Cdn govt.

This from the article:

quote:

By the fifth day of the negotiation, Canada had already won the Fossil of the Day award for most difficult or obstructive nation 4 times, which was accepted by the youth delegates

And in reply to Unionist, I agree with you that we have been pretty negative here about flying to the place, and that I have been harsh on the Indonesian govt. for not knowing english. If communication cannot be done in a reasonable manner then there will not be progress at international meetings - details are important when battling climate change too. Otherwise, how will anyone know what other nation's delagate are talking about? Thats why I mentioned it.


From: B.C. | Registered: Oct 2007  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 09 December 2007 11:01 AM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
No climate deal without U.S., Baird says

excerpt:

BALI, Indonesia – Canada's environment minister has dismissed the notion of signing a climate-change treaty without the United States, saying it would handicap the Canadian economy without reversing greenhouse gases.


From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 09 December 2007 11:06 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Noah_Scape:

And in reply to Unionist, I agree with you that we have been pretty negative here about flying to the place, and that I have been harsh on the Indonesian govt. for not knowing english. If communication cannot be done in a reasonable manner then there will not be progress at international meetings - details are important when battling climate change too. Otherwise, how will anyone know what other nation's delagate are talking about? Thats why I mentioned it.

I still think we're talking about two different things. Indonesia is the host - but it's not running the conference, nor the simultaneous translation, etc. That's the business of the United Nations. And I think you'll find that their official conference website is pretty flawless in English, French, and Spanish!


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
500_Apples
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posted 09 December 2007 02:24 PM      Profile for 500_Apples   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I am shocked that some of you are resorting to the ludditism of criticizing the existence of air travel.

Aviation is responsible for around 2-3% of global greenhouse gas emmissions. It is not one of the big players like cars, agriculture, power plants and manufacturing. Additionally, the general public likes airplaines. When you obssess over this 3% of emmissions, you alienate the public, and do damage to any prospect of taking care of the real problem - the other 97%.

As far as I know, environmentalism is not about retreating to the stone age. It is about learning to show restraint, being sustainable, and accepting more energy-efficient technologies even if they're more expensive. Solar electricity is a go, as would be a carbon-tax or a meat-tax. Banning air travel is ridiculous. Air travel is necessary for people to do their jobs. It's an integral part of our economic and political system. It also allows cultural integration. People appreciate the rest of the world nowadays. One might argue that criminilizing international travel is warmongering, as different cultures would lose touch. I also note that while there are simple ways to make energy manufacture more carbon efficient (e.g. more nuclear plants) there are no simple ways to greatly reduce air travel emmissions.

The problem with a 10, 000 person conference is not it costs a lot of carbon. The problem is you'll never get 10, 000 people to agree. There should be small, focused conferences, with specific goals. Only with sharp ambitions can we have real achievements.


From: Montreal, Quebec | Registered: Jun 2006  |  IP: Logged
Richard MacKinnon
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posted 09 December 2007 02:42 PM      Profile for Richard MacKinnon   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Not having a planet will hurt the economy more. Here's proof that the Conservatives don't really believe the scientific evidence and are paying lip service in order to placate voters. America wants its cake and wants to eat it too. Since it can't Harper's willing to sell most of our cake. Neither can see that the bakery is on fire.
From: Home of the Red Hill Concrete Expressway | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Merowe
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posted 09 December 2007 02:42 PM      Profile for Merowe     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by 500_Apples:
I am shocked that some of you are resorting to the ludditism of criticizing the existence of air travel.

Aviation is responsible for around 2-3% of global greenhouse gas emmissions. It is not one of the big players like cars, agriculture, power plants and manufacturing. Additionally, the general public likes airplaines. When you obssess over this 3% of emmissions, you alienate the public, and do damage to any prospect of taking care of the real problem - the other 97%.

As far as I know, environmentalism is not about retreating to the stone age. It is about learning to show restraint, being sustainable, and accepting more energy-efficient technologies even if they're more expensive. Solar electricity is a go, as would be a carbon-tax or a meat-tax. Banning air travel is ridiculous. Air travel is necessary for people to do their jobs. It's an integral part of our economic and political system. It also allows cultural integration. People appreciate the rest of the world nowadays. One might argue that criminilizing international travel is warmongering, as different cultures would lose touch. I also note that while there are simple ways to make energy manufacture more carbon efficient (e.g. more nuclear plants) there are no simple ways to greatly reduce air travel emmissions.

The problem with a 10, 000 person conference is not it costs a lot of carbon. The problem is you'll never get 10, 000 people to agree. There should be small, focused conferences, with specific goals. Only with sharp ambitions can we have real achievements.


I agree that the issue of 10,000 air commuters is irrelevant in this instance; on the greater question of air travel however, the issue is that as a means of transportation it is far more polluting than the automobile for example - you know the statistic that one flight across the Atlantic is worth a year of normal automobile use. As some here have noted, it is all a matter of balance; some use of air travel seems indicated.

What is alarming is the rapid proliferation of cutrate airlines and frivolous air travel opportunities and the expansion of airports, all designed to significantly increase the use of this method of transportation. Obviously in the longterm, extensive use of current air technology seems contra-indicated. Many of my friends here think nothing of flying to another European city on a weekends jaunt and this sort of behaviour is actively encouraged by the tourist and aviation industry. I get these charmingly blank stares when I suggest such junkets aren't environmentally the smartest move.

And somehow, hordes of tourists jetting halfway round the planet to lie on a beach for ten days doesn't seem, oh, that much more evolved than the stone age, as pleasant a diversion as it no doubt is.


From: Dresden, Germany | Registered: Apr 2003  |  IP: Logged
500_Apples
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posted 09 December 2007 02:49 PM      Profile for 500_Apples   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Merowe,

Blaming the aviation industry for global warming is like blaming people who flush their dental floss for the expenses of water treatment and river pollution. When it comes to a politically challenging issue like the environment, activists and those of a just heart and mind should focus on the big picture, not waste time on minor perturbations.

The big picture here is: Energy production, Motorized transportation, Agriculture and Manufacturing.


From: Montreal, Quebec | Registered: Jun 2006  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 09 December 2007 02:54 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:

500_Apples:
As far as I know, environmentalism is not about retreating to the stone age. It is about learning to show restraint, being sustainable, and accepting more energy-efficient technologies even if they're more expensive.

The sustainability thing is the sticker. Our use of energy, including production of food and shelter, arguably is no longer sustainable, nor will improving technologies alone make it so. Ergo, we need to reduce consumption of energy, cut back on agriculture and so on. It isn't a return to the Stone Age, but it would be a radical redirection of the Industrial one.

Our chances of survival might be better if we began dismantling some of our complex society in favour of a much more simpler one with a lot less trade and interdependence.

quote:

Solar electricity is a go, as would be a carbon-tax or a meat-tax.

Such taxes favour the rich and hurt everyone else. Better than taxes would be rationing with set limits of total consumption.

quote:

Air travel is necessary for people to do their jobs. It's an integral part of our economic and political system.

Jobs can be changed, we did fine without it before. And the economic system is part of the cause of our problem, it has to be changed.

quote:

One might argue that criminilizing international travel is warmongering....

One could, and one could also argue anything else that they liked. However, ending private air travel does not constitute criminalizing international travel. It just makes it slower.

quote:

there are simple ways to make energy manufacture more carbon efficient (e.g. more nuclear plants)

One of the problems with nuclear power, as with hydrogen, ethanol, tar sands and such is that the net energy gain may be either marginal or nonexistent when you factor in all of the energy required to set up and run these operations.

We need to be planning not only for more efficient ways to capture and use energy, but for a world where the total energy consumption by humans is much less than it is now.


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 10 December 2007 04:38 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Corporations - not environmentalists - will be part of Canadian delegation at Bali

quote:
After banishing environmentalists and opposition MPs from Canada's delegation to the Bali climate conference, Ottawa has decided to allow an oil company and several business executives to join the official delegation.

Two companies from Ottawa, where Environment Minister John Baird is an MP, have been allowed to join Canada's official delegation to the climate-change conference, according to documents obtained by The Globe and Mail.

A major oil and gas producer, EnCana Corp. of Calgary, was also permitted to join the delegation.


The Globe should not be so shocked. Stephen Harper and John Baird themselves are mouthpieces for the oil and gas barons. Why not bring along His Master's Voice (tm)?


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 10 December 2007 05:50 AM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Damn. It just keeps getting worse, but that was to be expected with Baird's appointment as Minister of the Environment. Baird as Environment Minister???? There's an oxymoron (or just moron) for you.
From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
remind
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posted 10 December 2007 07:40 AM      Profile for remind     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Baird apparently announced today, in Bali, millions of dollars in grants to Canadian cities to assist them in going green.
From: "watching the tide roll away" | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Farmpunk
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posted 10 December 2007 11:01 AM      Profile for Farmpunk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Listened to a report on The Current this morning. Anna-Maria talking to an environmental think tanker who said that the Bali conference is nothing more than a political get-together to set an agenda for further talks and negotiations. If he was correct, then the conference is a waste of time and energy, literally and figuratively. It may help to bring attention to the environmental issues, as FM suggests, but I'm still not sold on how almost two hundred countries can come to any kind of significant concensus in, what, ten days?
From: SW Ontario | Registered: Jul 2006  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 10 December 2007 01:39 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
US Balks at Bali Carbon Targets
From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
bliter
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posted 11 December 2007 01:49 AM      Profile for bliter   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
Bicycles trump biofuels at Bali:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7136486.stm

excerpt:

quote:
"Technology must be at the heart of the future response to climate change," UNFCCC Executive Secretary Yvo de Boer declared at the talks.

But which technology? In a survey of 1,000 professionals in 105 countries, IUCN attempted to gauge which technologies inspire the most confidence.

The survey included people from governments, NGOs and industry.


Delivering a low-carbon future

In detail
Of 18 technologies suggested by IUCN, the current generation of biofuels came bottom of the list, with only 21% believing in its potential to "lower overall carbon levels in the atmosphere without unacceptable side effects" over the next 25 years.

Nearly twice as many were confident in the potential of nuclear energy while solar power for hot water and electricity emerged as the most favoured low-carbon technologies.

Overall, respondents said increasing energy efficiency and reducing demand could produce more benefits than "clean" energy sources.

Although the EU and the US are attempting to boost the expansion of biofuels, recent evidence is equivocal about their potential.

Studies show they may produce only marginal carbon savings compared to conventional petrol and diesel.

In Indonesia and elsewhere, forests are being cleared for palm oil plantations, partly to produce biofuels. There is evidence that leaving forests intact results in greater climate benefits while protecting biodiversity.



From: delta | Registered: Sep 2007  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 11 December 2007 10:59 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I was just reading an article in The New York Times today about the division between Europe's and the USA's respective positions.

One of the things noted in the article struck me with some surprise:

"There appears to be broad consensus that 2009 will be chosen as the deadline for the talks, but many disagreements remain over such issues as whether cuts in emissions should be mandatory or whether China, which has just passed the United States as the largest emitter of carbon dioxide and is adding a new coal-fired power plant each week, should be obligated to make similar cuts in emissions as developed countries."

I was surprised that China has now passed the USA as the largest emitter of carbon dioxide but, even more so, by a reluctance to include China within the scope of any agreement.

If China is now the biggest emitter of CO2, what is the argument for why it makes sense to exempt China from the scope of the agreement?


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
500_Apples
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posted 11 December 2007 11:16 AM      Profile for 500_Apples   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Sven,

There are a lot of bad arguments for excluding China.

Theese include the idea that their per capita emmissions are still lower than the USA, and that their integrated contribution to atmospheric carbon content since 1750 is stil very low, even if they're now responsible for the largest portion of the increase.


From: Montreal, Quebec | Registered: Jun 2006  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 11 December 2007 11:43 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
China and USA play the role of synergists contributing to global warming. Corporate America needs China to be their manufacturing plant, and U.S. dollar hegemonists need the CCP to recycle U.S. dollars to pay for out of control consumption based economy with China's and other countries' dollar savings. It's a vicious cycle, a dance to the death of the planet. It's like the cyclops who said to Ulysses and his men trapped in the cave with him, "More wine!"
From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 11 December 2007 12:44 PM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Fidel:
China and USA play the role of synergists contributing to global warming. Corporate America needs China to be their manufacturing plant, and U.S. dollar hegemonists need the CCP to recycle U.S. dollars to pay for out of control consumption based economy with China's and other countries' dollar savings. It's a vicious cycle, a dance to the death of the planet. It's like the cyclops who said to Ulysses and his men trapped in the cave with him, "More wine!"

Wouldn't this mean that the USA should be arguing to exclude China from the agreement? Isn't it just the opposite?

Or, to put it another way, why would the Europeans not want China included within the scope of the agreement?


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 11 December 2007 04:05 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:

Wouldn't this mean that the USA should be arguing to exclude China from the agreement? Isn't it just the opposite?


From China's point of view, they should want to invest some of their surplus savings(China has a trade surplus with the US) into cleaning up the environment in that country. But like most every other country does, China uses its vast US dollar reserves to buy oil, and most importantly for the issue of Chinese exports, China manages its own currency as William Engdahl explains.

I think from CCP China's POV, the Chinese have hundreds of millions of Chinese still living in poverty. That's their excuse for unprecedented economic expansion for the last 21 years in a row. They still lay claim to developing world country status, although various US government and Canadian officials have travelled to Beijing in recent months to pressure the Chinese into letting their currency float on world money markets. The Yuan is currently undervalued, and Beijing maintains a lowly valued Yuan against the US dollar by buying US treasury bonds. Engdahl explains how the global dollar system works. US corporations, as opposed to money speculators and bankers, would rather see the Yuan valued higher so as to give American exports breathing room to ship their goods to countries like China. Money speculators like George Soros would love to gamble with and speculate on the Yuan. So far the Chinese have stalled on promises to float the Yuan, and it works in favour of Chinese industries and employment levels. It would help the US economy to increase exports to other countries and China.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 12 December 2007 09:11 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Okay, let me ask the question a different way:

Why would the Europeans not be insisting on having China (and India, for that matter) included within the scope of the new agreement?


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 12 December 2007 09:43 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Because they're trying to advance the movement to control climate change rather than sabotage it?
From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 12 December 2007 09:45 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:
Okay, let me ask the question a different way:

Why would the Europeans not be insisting on having China (and India, for that matter) included within the scope of the new agreement?


When you say Europeans, do you mean governments friendly to transnational corporations doing business in China and India?


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 12 December 2007 10:16 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:
Because they're trying to advance the movement to control climate change rather than sabotage it?

How does excluding the biggest producer of CO2 advance the movement?


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 12 December 2007 10:23 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:

How does excluding the biggest producer of CO2 advance the movement?


By accomplishing an international agreement - like Kyoto - which has a chance of drastically reducing GHG production, even if there are one or two renegades who scream and cry and refuse to join in (like the U.S.).

It's called the art of the possible. We practise that art in the union movement all the time. Otherwise we'd say: "We refuse to ratify this collective agreement until world hunger is vanquished!" Fine, says world hunger, I'll just carry on for a few more centuries.

Harper and Baird are the bootlickers of the corporations, but primarily of the oil and gas barons. They will never go against their interests, not for one nanosecond.

On international affairs, because they have no sense of morality or solidarity with human beings, they have decided to bow and scrape to Washington on every single issue without any exceptions whatsoever (given the right timing), be it Kyoto or the Middle East or Iran or Afghanistan or Aboriginal rights or NAFTA or softwood lumber or the death penalty, anyway, you get the picture. They don't need people who style themselves as progressive running interference for them on any of these issues, but they sure won't look gift horses in the mouth either.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 12 December 2007 10:33 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:
By accomplishing an international agreement - like Kyoto - which has a chance of drastically reducing GHG production, even if there are one or two renegades who scream and cry and refuse to join in (like the U.S.).

It's called the art of the possible. We practise that art in the union movement all the time. Otherwise we'd say: "We refuse to ratify this collective agreement until world hunger is vanquished!" Fine, says world hunger, I'll just carry on for a few more centuries.


Okay. I think I understand that. The advocates of an agreement are, basically, saying that China is a lost cause (it would be great to have China join the agreement but China is simply refusing to join, at least for the foreseeable future) and that the USA may be a lost cause (the USA may or may not agree to enter into a meaningful agreement).

If an agreement is meaningful without China (and India), would it be completely meaningless if it did not include the USA?


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 12 December 2007 12:28 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Meanwhile, Jack Layton was on fire in Question Period today - he said when the Alberta oilsands projects are fully in production, they will be the single largest, bar none, producer of greenhouse gases on this planet.
From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 12 December 2007 02:38 PM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Here is Senator John Kerry's assessment regarding US participation in a global agreement if China, India and other “developing nations” do not also participate in the agreement, as quoted in his speech in Bali:

"I can't guarantee that this bill will pass," admitted Kerry. However, he did promise that a climate change bill with mandatory emissions reductions would be adopted after the 2008 elections. Kerry endorsed setting a target date for a final post-Kyoto deal in 2009. However, he reminded the audience that the Senate had voted 95 to 0 in 1997 against submitting the Kyoto Protocol for a vote of ratification because it did not impose obligations on developing countries. Kerry warned that all countries must participate in any post-Kyoto climate agreement, or "we're not going to be able to pass it."

To me, that sounds like Kerry believes there is almost zero chance that the US will participate in mandatory CO2 reductions if “developing nations” do not also fall within the scope of the agreement, even when Bush is no longer in office.

Is that assessment shared here?


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 12 December 2007 04:38 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:

To me, that sounds like Kerry believes there is almost zero chance that the US will participate in mandatory CO2 reductions if “developing nations” do not also fall within the scope of the agreement, even when Bush is no longer in office.

Is that assessment shared here?


We have a small but powerful minority of big business interests in North America and Europe whose corporate livelihoods depend on fossil fuel use. If big business wasn't so entrenched in western world governments and now China and India, then people might start listening to scientists. Corporate-sponsored scientists would have us believe there is some sort of running debate happening over global warming. Mainstream scientists around the world say there is no debate happening.

I think there are some Republican Party supporters who believe there are significant differences between "Liberal" Democrats and rightist hawks. This is what happens when a powerful plutocracy is allowed to establish itself in North America over the course of several decades. The two are one and the same here in Canada as well.

eta: I think transnational corporations and their hirelings in government are resigned to the fact that there will be waves of starving refugees clamoring to get into our countries as a result of global warming caused by Washington consensus for super Liberalization of economies, IMF policies for globalization being forced on those countries through structural adjustment plans for deforestation, industrial farming, and basically the largest period of British-style enclosure in world history. Our governments are resigning themselves to the idea that there will be turf wars for global resources in the near future.

[ 12 December 2007: Message edited by: Fidel ]


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 12 December 2007 04:43 PM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
So, you basically agree with Kerry's assessment?
From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 12 December 2007 04:55 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:
So, you basically agree with Kerry's assessment?

It looks pretty bleak.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Policywonk
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posted 12 December 2007 05:55 PM      Profile for Policywonk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
By accomplishing an international agreement - like Kyoto - which has a chance of drastically reducing GHG production, even if there are one or two renegades who scream and cry and refuse to join in (like the U.S.).

The Chinese may take action if the Americans do. They are very unlikely to do so if they don't. The American have the moral obligation to go first.


From: Edmonton | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 12 December 2007 06:04 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Back to Alberta - The National did a half hour review of the tarsands environmental disaster tonight, and showed that for technology costing a few bucks per barrel of oil from the tarsands, their emissions could be neutral.
From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 12 December 2007 06:05 PM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Policywonk:

The Chinese may take action if the Americans do. They are very unlikely to do so if they don't. The American have the moral obligation to go first.


What do you mean by "go first"? If the Chinese will sign an agreement if the Americans do, and if the Americans will sign the agreement if the Chinese do, then there is no "go first" about it. They both sign it at the same time, no?


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 12 December 2007 06:29 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Boom Boom:
Back to Alberta - The National did a half hour review of the tarsands environmental disaster tonight, and showed that for technology costing a few bucks per barrel of oil from the tarsands, their emissions could be neutral.

What?

And I must say, Canada does have the option of slapping green taxes on tar sands. Putin reworked export tax laws for natural resource exports in Russia and using free market mechanisms in doing it. The feds can lay claim to impotence through FTA-NAFTA for so long before having to admit that those trade deals are not just in direct conflict with Smithian free market ideology, FTA-NAFTA represent a menace to natural laws and global environment which all life depends on.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 12 December 2007 06:48 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:

What do you mean by "go first"? If the Chinese will sign an agreement if the Americans do, and if the Americans will sign the agreement if the Chinese do, then there is no "go first" about it. They both sign it at the same time, no?


Why does China have to sign at the same time? The USA is world leader, the world's security cop acting unilaterally in bombing and leading medieval sieges against several countries from last century to this one.

Are you trying to tell us that Uncle Sam needs his hand held on this one?


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Policywonk
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posted 12 December 2007 09:42 PM      Profile for Policywonk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
What do you mean by "go first"?

I'm not talking about signing an agreement; I'm talking about cutting emissions!


From: Edmonton | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 13 December 2007 01:08 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Al Gore has figured it out. Listen to him, Sven:

Gore calls on Canada to stop playing on U.S. team

quote:
Al Gore has delivered a blistering message on climate change that seemed custom-designed for a Canadian audience: he talked hockey.

The Nobel Prize winning environmentalist earned a standing ovation at the UN summit where he exhorted the world to act, even if his own country – the United States – does not.

And at that precise moment, the former U.S. vice-president mentioned two of the greatest Canadian hockey players ever to play the game. Wayne Gretzky and Bobby Hull were great, he said, because they saw the play where it was going – not where it's been.[...]

Gore heaped scorn on the idea that the world can only sign a climate deal if the U.S. does – which is a position firmly held by Canada.



From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
The Wizard of Socialism
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posted 13 December 2007 02:06 PM      Profile for The Wizard of Socialism   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
And then he got into his private jet plane and flew to one of his mansions. Someday, I'd like to live large, Al Gore style. Then I can fly around the world, telling the "lower classes" how they should live with no heat or light so there's plenty of jet fuel for me!
From: A Proud Canadian! | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 13 December 2007 02:27 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by The Wizard of Socialism:
And then he got into his private jet plane and flew to one of his mansions. Someday, I'd like to live large, Al Gore style. Then I can fly around the world, telling the "lower classes" how they should live with no heat or light so there's plenty of jet fuel for me!

If he can help awaken Canadians on GHG, I will applaud him, no matter how rich and politically incorrect he is.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 13 December 2007 10:32 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
It's already too late to stop drastic climate change.
From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
bliter
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posted 13 December 2007 10:53 PM      Profile for bliter   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Boom Boom:
Meanwhile, Jack Layton was on fire in Question Period today - he said when the Alberta oilsands projects are fully in production, they will be the single largest, bar none, producer of greenhouse gases on this planet.

http://www.rabble.ca/babble/ultimatebb.php?ubb=get_topic&f=45&t=000413

Hope it hasn't become a matter of jobs first.


From: delta | Registered: Sep 2007  |  IP: Logged
Policywonk
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posted 14 December 2007 12:12 PM      Profile for Policywonk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
It's already too late to stop drastic climate change.

It's a question of limiting it.


From: Edmonton | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
bliter
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posted 14 December 2007 12:25 PM      Profile for bliter   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Policywonk:

It's a question of limiting it.


So, in the interim, can we exploit the situation?
The need to heat less, perhaps, may be considered a positive. And what about agriculture - even the backyard vegetable garden? Though I doubt we'll soon be seeing other than imported bananas.


From: delta | Registered: Sep 2007  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 15 December 2007 06:04 AM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The neoliberal free-marketers are doing some arm-twisting to make sure nobody tries anything that would strain the limits of capitalism:
quote:
...right now there is a hefty wad of cash being dangled before governments and NGOs that comes with a catch: accept carbon trading as the deal or get nothing at all. Even so-called adaptation funding, arguably the largest piece of the pie, if done correctly, is being proffered to cash-poor countries - but only as a percentage of the carbon-trading budget. The message: accept carbon trading or your poor will starve.

Not surprisingly, many governments are jumping on board with this offer. Too many developing countries are still suffering the legacy of indebtedness and poverty to Northern institutions like the World Bank and IMF, staggering debt set in motion by the high oil prices of the 1970s, to have much of a choice in the matter. If it means pledging to protect their forests and treat them as carbon offsets to allow the North to continue to pollute, so be it.

And then there is the issue of bribery. While no one can be certain how much money has infected the political process here, there are indications that agreements that are being structured around Indonesia's forests involve insider dealing with carbon traders, deals that place millions if not billions of dollars on the table. Surely, once the deals are sealed, there's enough to share with a few choice decision-makers.

The World Bank's cocktail party reception for its Forest Carbon Partnership Facility December 11 in Bali was met with organized protests from indigenous peoples and their allies, and chants of "Hands off, World Bank!" The reason: the forests where indigenous peoples make their home are now up for auction as "carbon sinks." Yet in an age-old pattern of marginalization, no one bothered to consult the indigenous peoples.

Surprisingly, or perhaps not so surprisingly to long-term observers of the climate debate, this enthusiasm for carbon trading has spread to many NGOs as well. Some conservation groups are eager for more cash to help them protect a rainforest here or save an endangered species there. And organizations that work on hunger or disaster relief are equally eager to get more revenue for a problem that only promises to grow worse.

Those who are skeptical of the conditions placed on this cash are largely outside the NGO circles that have dominated the process thus far. To be fair, those working on this issue for years have seen proposed regulatory measures shot down in favor of market mechanisms, in order to get the largest emitter, the United States, on board. Now they are merely trying to get the United States to stop obstructing whatever deals can be struck in the final days.


The Nation

From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Vera Gottlieb
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posted 15 December 2007 06:42 AM      Profile for Vera Gottlieb   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The Bali conference. What a great show! Can't wait to hear about the next spectacle. A big cloud of hot, polluted air. Earth: largest cemetery in the universe.
From: British Columbia | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 15 December 2007 06:50 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
M. Spector (or anyone else, actually), what should the world-wide maximum average (per-person) rate of CO2 production be set at?

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: Sven ]


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 15 December 2007 09:11 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
By what was said on CBC News last night, it looks as if our stoogeocrats in Alberta are willing to turn that province into a toxic waste dump for the sake of exporting their U.S.-defined quota of oil from tars sands to feed the most fossil fuel dependent economy in the world. It's like they have Gumby for an environment minister in Wild Rose County. And don't look for anyone in Harper's crew to grow a spine anytime soon.

Kyoto on Track, Despite Some Slackers


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 15 December 2007 09:30 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Fidel:
Kyoto on Track, Despite Some Slackers

Although the article you linked to say:

"It (Kyoto) has produced no demonstrable reductions in emissions," wrote British economists Gwyn Prins and Steve Rayner in a recent issue of Nature.

I'd like to read that Nature article...

Also, your linked article states that principal gains from Kyoto came from:

"While it looks like Kyoto is a great success, much of the total emissions reduction is due to the economic collapse of communist regimes in Central and Eastern Europe. Countries such as Russia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Hungary are 25 to 50 percent below their sky-high carbon-spewing industrial days of 1990."

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: Sven ]


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 15 December 2007 09:53 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Fidel, your linked article says, "Britain is 15 percent below 1990".

But, I was looking here and it says that Britain's per-capital CO2 emissions were 10.0 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions per capita in 1990 and 9.79 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions per capita in 2004. That's a reduction of 2.1% (or an average annual reduction of 15/100th of a percent each year).

France's per-capital CO2 emissions were 6.4 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions per capita in 1990 and 6.2 2004. That's a reduction of 3.0% (or an average annual reduction of 23/100th of a percent each year).

The only significant-sized country in Europe that had a greater reduction is Germany (but see my post about re the "economic collapse" in Eastern Germany that is principally responsible for that decline). All other significantly-sized countries in Western Europe have had an increase in CO2 emissions.

In that same period of time, US per-capita emissions increased by 8% (or 0.55% each year). Canada? Canadian per-capita emissions increased by 33% (or 2.08% each year).


ETA: In the five years prior to 2004, Germany actually had an increase in per-capita emissions.

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: Sven ]


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 15 December 2007 09:56 AM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:
M. Spector (or anyone else, actually), what should the world-wide maximum average (per-person) rate of CO2 production be set at?
At current world population levels, about 1/2 a ton per person. As population increases, the per capita would have to decline.

From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 15 December 2007 10:12 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:
[QB]"It (Kyoto) has produced no demonstrable reductions in emissions," wrote British economists Gwyn Prins and Steve Rayner in a recent issue of Nature.

But it does say that Britain, Sweden and Denmark are successful in abiding by Kyoto. And that Spain, Portugal and Australia, after long stretches of political conservatism in both countries, are delinquent wrt Kyoto and are now dealing with the environmental consequences.

quote:
U.S. emissions are 16 percent higher than 1990, while Canada and Australia are about 25 percent higher than 1990. Of the three, only Canada is a Kyoto signatory

These countries were allies during the cold war era. About two-thirds of the world was capitalist at the height of Soviet influence in Asia. Scientists around the world are telling us that cold war promises for a world-wide capitalist economic long run are incompatible with nature, Sven. It was a colossal lie. Globalization of "this" can't happen without threatening every living thing on the planet. This is where we are today with weak leaders elected to phony majority dictatorial rule in the west and faced with making the big executive decisions. It's no wonder Canada's participation rates in general elections are beginning to resemble the USA's. The last three most politically conservative nations in the western world are clinging to power by phony majority rule and even having to resort to stealing elections in your country. We need advanced democracy before we can do anything about advancing problems like global warming. We will need something on the order of a revolution here in the far west.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 15 December 2007 10:29 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:

In that same period of time, US per-capita emissions increased by 8% (or 0.55% each year). Canada? Canadian per-capita emissions increased by 33% (or 2.08% each year).


I think we have to remember that a large percentage of our economy is pumping fossil fuels south of the border. Our stooges in Alberta are transforming that province into a toxic waste dump so that they'll be able to export something like 5 million barrels of oil per day to the U.S.

And Canada is a net exporter of total energy to the U.S. We should be self-sufficient with our total energy needs. But we've actually built coal-fired power plants so the U.S. can be greener.

And now our Liberal stooges in Ontario will fork out anywhere between $45-$75 billion dollars to Canadian or even American nuclear contractors for enormously expensive nuclear power expansion projects. Norhern Ontario has lost tens of thousands of jobs because their cheapest in the world electrical power generation is the highest priced power in Canada due to crazy Liberal government pricing schemes. Overall Ontario has sacrificed 175, 000 good paying manufacturing and forestry jobs. Canada's largest province is at a standstill as far as economic expansion goes.

Canada sends oceans of natural gas to the U.S. so that places like Long Island can power city buses with lower emission Canadian natural gas.

Our stoogeocrats in Ottawa and provinces have retarded this country's development toward high tech information-based economy in order that we continue being a hewer and drawer economy, because that's what Washington tells our colonial administrators we must do.

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: Fidel ]


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 15 December 2007 10:38 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:
At current world population levels, about 1/2 a ton per person. As population increases, the per capita would have to decline.

At 1/2 ton per person:

The following countries would have to reduce their per-capita CO2 emissions by 50% to 75%:

Republic of the Congo
Yemen
Gabon
Kyrgyzstan
Honduras
Peru
Albania
Vietnam
Tonga
India
Armenia
Colombia
Namibia
Fiji
Morocco
Costa Rica
Dominica
Uruguay
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Indonesia
Saint Helena
Panama
Brazil
Guyana
Moldova
Cook Islands

China would have to reduce its per-capital CO2 emissions by 87% (but China's per-capita emissions are increasing by over 4% every year).

The following countries would have to reduce their per-capita CO2 emissions by at least 90%:

Serbia and Montenegro (90%)
Suriname
Republic of Macedonia
Croatia
Uzbekistan (90%)
Hong Kong
French Guiana
Bulgaria
Switzerland
Portugal
Hungary
Sweden (92%)
Algeria
Malta
France (92%)
Bahamas
Iran
Seychelles
Venezuela (92%)
Belarus
Slovakia
Cayman Islands
Ukraine
Malaysia
Iceland
Italy
Spain
New Zealand
Poland
Slovenia
Cyprus
Austria
Bermuda
Greece
Netherlands
Turkmenistan (94%)
South Africa
Belgium
South Korea
United Kingdom (95%)
Germany (95%)
Denmark
Saint Pierre and Miquelon
Japan (95%)
Greenland
Libya (95%)
Ireland
Russia
Israel
New Caledonia
Equatorial Guinea (96%)
Czech Republic
Montserrat
Palau
Singapore
Oman
Finland (96%)
Gibraltar
Kazakhstan
Saudi Arabia
Faroe Islands
Estonia (96%)
Nauru
Falkland Islands
Australia
Norway (97%)
Canada (98%)
United States (98%)
Aruba
Netherlands Antilles
Bahrain
Brunei
Trinidad and Tobago
Luxembourg (98%)
United Arab Emirates
Kuwait
Qatar

If the rate has to be reduced to 1/2 ton per person, we're fucked. Might as well pack it up and watch the sunset.

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: Sven ]


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 15 December 2007 10:42 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The following countries are the only countries (as of 2004) emitting CO2 at a rate of 1/2 ton per person per year or less:

Chad
Burundi
Afghanistan
Cambodia
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Mali
Rwanda
Central African Republic
Uganda
Burkina Faso
Malawi
Ethiopia
Niger
Nepal
Tanzania
Comoros
Mozambique
Liberia
Madagascar
Guinea
Eritrea
Timor-Leste
Sierra Leone
Gambia
Guinea-Bissau
Palestinian Authority
Haiti
Zambia
Myanmar
Cameroon
Laos
Bangladesh
Côte d'Ivoire
Benin
Sudan
Kenya
Kiribati
Ghana
Togo
Solomon Islands
Papua New Guinea
Vanuatu
Senegal
Djibouti


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 15 December 2007 10:57 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 15 December 2007 12:06 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
How many plastic widgets and gadgets do we plan to buy this Christmas?

I think what else is crazy is the way new housing projects are being built so as to cause the inhabitants to have to drive several miles to get groceries and all that stuff made from oil byproducts. And you know it's going to wear out sooner than later. All those gadgets and cheapy stuff being made by an obsolete economy is designed for built-in obsolescence, only to be thrown on the capitalist scrap heaps of time.

We can't afford capitalism anymore. Global warming is nature's way of telling us to ditch what is an obsolete and dangerous ideology before it's too late. And we'd do that if it wasn't for our democratic deficits in the last three most politically conservative nations where industrial smoke stacks billow CO2 and smog 24-7, and where a Canadian province is being transformed into a toxic waste dump because of the broken ideology.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 15 December 2007 02:06 PM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Fidel:
How many plastic widgets and gadgets do we plan to buy this Christmas?

It's not just "plastic widgets and gadgets" we all like to poo-poo as capitalist consumerism.

If M. Spector is correct and per-capita CO2 emissions would have to get down to 1/2 ton, you would need to get rid of your:

computer
cell phone
restaurants
vehicle
pets
jet travel
more than one good pair of shoes/boots
dishwasher
washer/dryer
blowdryer
motor scooter
sport stadiums
coffee shops
no new TV when your current one blows (better yet, just unplug the one you have right now)
most drinks other than water

The list is endless and it includes just about everything that's material that most people like to use, really.

At a 1/2 ton CO2 rate per person, getting rid of "plastic widgets and gadgets" will barely register when looked at in terms of all of the things that you will need to forgo in order to get to that emissions rate.

Take a good, hard look at the economies (and living conditions of the citizen) of those countries that are operating at or below M. Spector's per-person 1/2 ton CO2 rate (see the list above).

To think that that rate can be achieved by simply getting rid of "plastic widgets and gadgets", Hummers, and "American excesses" is delusional.

That rate would require severe and painful consequences...but no one thinks that would apply to them. Oh, no. Just "the rich".

Well, I've got news for you, nearly every single person in Canada is "rich" when measured against a 1/2 ton rate.


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 15 December 2007 02:10 PM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:

At current world population levels, about 1/2 a ton per person. As population increases, the per capita would have to decline.

Alloting GHG by per capita amounts may be a mistake. What we might need is an acceptable ratio of GHG to atmosphere, not population.

Perhaps GHG allotments should be calculated by area so that no area receives more than the maximum acceptable amount of GHG.

For comparison:

Country ..... Area in sq km ..... Population ..... Area % ..... Population % ..... Emission %
Russia ..... 17,075,200 ..... 144,978,573 ..... 10.6180% ..... 2.3254% ..... 5.30%
Canada ..... 9,976,140 ..... 31,902,268 ..... 6.2035% ..... 0.5117% ..... 2.10%
United States ..... 9,629,091 ..... 280,562,489 ..... 5.9877% ..... 4.5002% ..... 20.70%
China ..... 9,596,960 ..... 1,284,303,705 ..... 5.9677% ..... 20.6000% ..... 22.10%
Brazil ..... 8,511,965 ..... 176,029,560 ..... 5.2930% ..... 2.8235% .....
Australia ..... 7,686,850 ..... 19,546,792 ..... 4.7800% ..... 0.3135% .....
India ..... 3,287,590 ..... 1,045,845,226 ..... 2.0443% ..... 16.7752% ..... 4.60%
Argentina ..... 2,766,890 ..... 37,812,817 ..... 1.7206% ..... 0.6065% .....

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: Jerry West ]


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 15 December 2007 04:06 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:
That rate would require severe and painful consequences...but no one thinks that would apply to them. Oh, no. Just "the rich".

Well, I've got news for you, nearly every single person in Canada is "rich" when measured against a 1/2 ton rate.


I think I could live like a German or Swedish person and still be pretty comfortable.

I think those transnational corporations and big-whigs with shares in Exxon-Imperial etc might hurt just a little more than people like me though if or when it does come down to reducing overall consumption and energy usage.

I, for one, am completely willing to give up any possible opportinity I might have to siphon off a billion dollars a year in oil profits from Alberta, if you can imagine. I guess I'd have to live in Alberta to say that with any kind of personal conviction.

But among all of us big wheels I mentioned capable of winning over friends and influencing enemies: Exxon-Imperial, Encana, Shell, Syncrude and the rest, and Fidel your's truly - guess which of us has more influence in Washington and Ottawa where the big executive decisions are made ?


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
nycndp
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posted 15 December 2007 07:13 PM      Profile for nycndp     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Post moved to different thread

[ 15 December 2007: Message edited by: nycndp ]


From: Ajax, Ontario | Registered: Feb 2006  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 15 December 2007 07:29 PM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Fidel:
I think I could live like a German or Swedish person and still be pretty comfortable.

Well, of course you would (and so would I). But, to get down to M. Spector's 1/2 ton in per-capita CO2 emission rate, Sweden would have to reduce its emissions by 92% and Germany would have to reduce its rate by 95% (not a hell of a lot different than Canada (98%) and the US (98%)).


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 15 December 2007 10:34 PM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Well maybe I was being overly optimistic with a German way of life. But Sweden is 53rd highest producer of CO2 and striving toward non-oil dependence by so many years in near future.

Sven, Canada sends a lot of energy from fossil fuels to the States, while at the same time, power and gasoline and natural gas prices at home here are not so cheap. Our economy could be absolutely booming if it wasn't for the stoogeocracy.

But we've got weak and ineffective leaders who are subserviant to the corporatocracy and prolly on the take at the same time. Canada is America's gas tank. If it wasn't for this country propping up the corporatocracy, you Yanks would all have to take a rain cheque on capitalism for at least the next business quarter.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 15 December 2007 11:43 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
On behalf of the International Forum of Indigenous Peoples on Climate Change (IFIPCC), I would like to draw your attention to the fact that more than 80% of the world's biodiversity and most of the forests are found within our territories. Indigenous peoples also represent some 350 million individuals in the world and make up 90% of the world’s cultural diversity. Yet, we are suffering the worst impacts of climate change without having contributed to its creation as clearly evident in many parts of the Indigenous Peoples lands and which threatens our very survival.

We, Indigenous Peoples, have addressed our concerns to the UNFCCC Conference of the Parties since SBSTA 13 in Lyon, France, 2000. However, despite years of experience and efforts to participate in this process, and despite also the resounding support and approval this year of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, we are profoundly disappointed that, even as the United Nations’ Second International Decade of Indigenous Peoples begins, states are still ignoring our demands and contributions and we have even been shut out of this Bali process. This is unacceptable.


excerpt from Statement of the International Forum Of Indigenous Peoples on Climate Change at the Bali conference, December 14, 2007


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 16 December 2007 12:23 AM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Jerry West:
Alloting GHG by per capita amounts may be a mistake. What we might need is an acceptable ratio of GHG to atmosphere, not population.

Perhaps GHG allotments should be calculated by area so that no area receives more than the maximum acceptable amount of GHG.


I question the utility of "allotting" GHG emissions on a per capita* or country area basis. The figures that result tell us nothing about what any particular country must do to reduce emissions.

What's causing global warming is not per capita or per hectare emissions, but overall emissions. We will not have some countries devastated by climate change because of their higher emissions, while others go unscathed because theirs are lower. It's all one planet, and we're all sharing the same atmosphere. GHG levels around the world are all the same, regardless of population or geography.

Canada has no more right to produce GHG emissions because of its land area than India does because of its population. The only statistic that counts is worldwide levels of CO2 equivalent.
-----
* My per capita calculation in a previous post may have been wrong. It may be more like one tonne per capita:

quote:
The IPCC Report (2007) estimates that a 50%-85% reduction from 2000 levels of 40 gigatonnes is required to stabilize greenhouse gas emissions at a level to limit warming to 2-2.4°C. Using a 75% reduction (not the maximum in the IPCC report – but above mid-point to reduce risk of overshooting the 2°C target) – this equates to 10 gigatonnes of emissions by 2050. Given a population forecast of 2050 of 9.2 billion (UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs, 2006) this equates to just over 1 tonne of CO2e emissions for every person on the planet at that time.

Therefore, in order to effectively reduce emissions to a level that bring the risk of overshooting the potentially dangerous 2°C, emissions per capita therefore have to be reduced by 1 tonne per capita every 5 years for the 35 years from 2015 to 2050 (0.2 tonne per capita per year). This would achieve an 87.5% reduction from 8 tonnes per capita to 1 tonne per capita of CO2e in per capita emission and approximately a 75% reduction in overall emissions from 2000 levels.


Greenpeace

From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 16 December 2007 04:56 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Apologies if this was posted already: Isolated Canada grudgingly accepts Bali deal
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Richard MacKinnon
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posted 16 December 2007 05:34 AM      Profile for Richard MacKinnon   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
From Michelle's link - "This broader agreement nearly collapsed at the last minute today when India and China insisted on stronger promises by wealthy countries to help provide “green” technology to the developing nations. When the tougher language was added to the agreement, the United States refused to accept the deal – sparking a wave of criticism from almost every other nation at the conference. Finally the U.S. flip-flopped and accepted the language, allowing the deal to go ahead."

I can imagine in the not-so-distant future where a similar body is convened to find a way to stop an asteroid from killing all life on Earth. India and China might want missile technology and at the last minute the US will back down from its refusal to go along with the language. Everyone will be happy until they realize that the asteroid deterrent is aimed half-way to the target.


From: Home of the Red Hill Concrete Expressway | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 16 December 2007 08:18 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:
I question the utility of "allotting" GHG emissions on a per capita* or country area basis. The figures that result tell us nothing about what any particular country must do to reduce emissions.
What's causing global warming is not per capita or per hectare emissions, but overall emissions. We will not have some countries devastated by climate change because of their higher emissions, while others go unscathed because theirs are lower. It's all one planet, and we're all sharing the same atmosphere. GHG levels around the world are all the same, regardless of population or geography.

Canada has no more right to produce GHG emissions because of its land area than India does because of its population. The only statistic that counts is worldwide levels of CO2 equivalent.


Per-capita emission rates are very important.

Let's say a country with 50 million people has a per-capita rate of 1 ton of CO2 per year and another country with 10 million people has a per-capita rate of 5 tons of CO2 per year.

Both countries are producing 50 million tons per year.

Are they equal in doing "their part" for addressing CO2?

No. And, the reason for making that conclusion is based on the per-capita rate.

So, the per-capita rate is vital information.

[ 16 December 2007: Message edited by: Sven ]


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 16 December 2007 09:41 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Well Sven, it looks like big-humungous American energy companies controlling the oil and gas in Alberta will just to have to decide to stop siphoning off as much cheap Canadian fossil fuels from here to there. Maybe they can stockpile the oil and gasoline and jack the prices up to curb consumption and boost profits even further. I wish they'd take all of the tar sands and pump it south for refining in the U.S., because they're transforming Alberta into a toxic cess pool as it is now. Or something.

Perhaps Exxon-Imperial and corporate boards in your country will decide to develop some kind of North American energy policy in secret meetings somewhere. Because it doesn't look like our stoogeocrats up this way are going to take the initiative. Ottawa and Calgary are taking the hands-off brains-off approach.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
bliter
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posted 16 December 2007 10:24 AM      Profile for bliter   Author's Homepage        Edit/Delete Post
Another black eye for Canada:

http://environment.independent.co.uk/article3239364.ece


From: delta | Registered: Sep 2007  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 16 December 2007 11:32 AM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:
Per-capita emission rates are very important.

Let's say a country with 50 million people has a per-capita rate of 1 ton of CO2 per year and another country with 10 million people has a per-capita rate of 5 tons of CO2 per year.

Both countries are producing 50 million tons per year.

Are they equal in doing "their part" for addressing CO2?

No. And, the reason for making that conclusion is based on the per-capita rate.

So, the per-capita rate is vital information.


You're arbitrarily selecting per-capita rates as a basis for emission reduction targets. You could be just as arbitrary and select per-hectare emission reduction targets.

Suppose, in your above example, the country with 10 million people is twice the size of the country with 50 million people. Both produce 50 million tonnes a year, but on a per-hectare basis, the latter country produces twice the emissions per hectare of the former. Are they equal in doing "their part"?

Or, you could base it on GDP. The country with 10 million people could have a GDP twice the size of the one with 50 million people, and since they have the same total emissions level, the former country could be said to be twice as "green" as the latter in terms of emissions per dollar of economic activity.

Per-capita rates are irrelevant because the solutions to climate change are not personal, per-capita solutions. For example, as a Canadian, most of my per-capita GHG emission consists of my "share" of the emissions produced by the tar sands and other industry, over which I have no control as an individual. The solutions are primarily political and economic. They require a new way of ordering society and the production of material goods. It's such a radical change that it can't be done within the capitalist paradigm.


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
500_Apples
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posted 16 December 2007 11:47 AM      Profile for 500_Apples   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Per-hectare emission rates are completely non-nonsensical given the laws of physics. This may come as a surprise to some, but the atmosphere distributes quite well. They might have made more sense for CFCs, as that was a rapid process. But the greenhouse effect is not a rapid process.

Per capita rates make the most sense but perhaps not from a production point of view. I wish we would look at it from a consumption point of view. Some of you may have noticed George Bush has a better climate record than Jean Chretien. That's because American manufacturing was relocating to China. Another example is how European emissions are declining because they're raiding the rainforest in Indonesia, releasing 30x more CO2 than they save, but not within the Kyoto accounting framework.

quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:

Per-capita rates are irrelevant because the solutions to climate change are not personal, per-capita solutions.

Ummm, yes they are.

Stop eating so much, particularly so much meat, watch the car, refit your home with modern wiring, install some solar panels, buy fewer consumer goods, don't have six kids, buy from local farmers... these are the solutions.

[ 16 December 2007: Message edited by: 500_Apples ]


From: Montreal, Quebec | Registered: Jun 2006  |  IP: Logged
500_Apples
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posted 16 December 2007 11:51 AM      Profile for 500_Apples   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post

[ 16 December 2007: Message edited by: 500_Apples ]


From: Montreal, Quebec | Registered: Jun 2006  |  IP: Logged
Jerry West
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posted 16 December 2007 11:52 AM      Profile for Jerry West   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:

MS:
The only statistic that counts is worldwide levels of CO2 equivalent.

In the big picture, absolutely correct. However, when it comes to reducing GHG (and not just CO2) there has to be some gauge to use to accomplish that reduction. We can set a maximum level for global GHG production relatively easily, who does what to achieve it is another question.


From: Gold River, BC | Registered: Oct 2001  |  IP: Logged
Fidel
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posted 16 December 2007 11:59 AM      Profile for Fidel     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by 500_Apples:
But the greenhouse effect is not a rapid process.

I don't know about that. CBC News reports this past week are saying scientists have under-estimated rates of change for several different phenomona.

quote:
Per capita rates make the most sense but perhaps not from a production point of view. I wish we would look at it from a consumption point of view.

I think they could put the kibosh to global CO2 production if they took the issue as serously as they do inflation. Non elected BIS bankers were able to exert influence on our democratically elected governments with crazy policies for zero inflation in the late 1980's-90s. When they realized that wasn't feasible politically or economically, our central banks settled for 2 percent targets. And our western governments have fallen in-line with those policies without much protest.


From: Viva La Revolución | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 16 December 2007 03:40 PM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:
Per-capita rates are irrelevant because the solutions to climate change are not personal, per-capita solutions.

I think you’re confusing “per-capita” rates with per-person responsibility. It’s not about what each person does as an individual. It’s a means of assessing the CO2 emissions in one country versus another.

For example, how would you assess this:

In 2004, India’s CO2 emissions were 1 billion metric tons and France’s CO2 emissions were 363 million metric tons. In other words, India produced about 2.8 times the CO2 that France produced. Or, to put it another way, France was only producing about 36% of the CO2 that India was producing.

So, if you ignore per-capita rates, presumably you’d say India has a lot more work to do regarding its CO2 emissions than France does?

That’s absurd.

On the other hand, if you look at the per-capita CO2 emission rate, India is producing only about 0.9 tons of CO2 per person whereas France is producing about 6.2 tons of CO2 per person.

Now which country has more work to do? It’s obviously France.


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
West Coast Greeny
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posted 16 December 2007 04:01 PM      Profile for West Coast Greeny     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
I don't know about that. CBC News reports this past week are saying scientists have under-estimated rates of change for several different phenomena.

No kidding. I read some scientists are predicting seasonal summer ice will disappear around 2013, a scenario considered laughable just a year ago.


From: Ewe of eh. | Registered: Sep 2004  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 16 December 2007 04:10 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Sven:
It's obviously France

It's only "obvious" if you assume that per capita emissions are what counts. I think it's far from obvious. Both France and India have a lot of work to do to reduce emissions.

Comparisons are not as simple as you make them out. It's apples and oranges; comparing countries that are predominantly agricultural with countries that are predominantly industrial, for example, requires more than just per-capita statistics.

Is the ultimate goal to have every country on Earth equal in their per-capita GHG emissions? I don't think so.

[ 16 December 2007: Message edited by: M. Spector ]


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Policywonk
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posted 16 December 2007 04:30 PM      Profile for Policywonk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
We can set a maximum level for global GHG production relatively easily, who does what to achieve it is another question.

Which is why per capita emissions is a useful concept, but I agree that consumption as well as production has to be taken into account. In general it is far easier for an industrialized society with high per capita emissions to cut them. Size and climate may be a factor in energy use and GHG emissions, but that just points to the importance of energy efficiency, not an excuse for lack of action.

quote:
Or, you could base it on GDP. The country with 10 million people could have a GDP twice the size of the one with 50 million people, and since they have the same total emissions level, the former country could be said to be twice as "green" as the latter in terms of emissions per dollar of economic activity.

The objective is not to reduce emissions per unit of economic activity (emissions intensity), but to reduce them absolutely. That, and considering the bias of GDP against developing countries, this suggestion is pretty odious.

quote:
But the greenhouse effect is not a rapid process.

Enhancing the greenhouse effect through the addition of anthropocentric greenhouse gases is a forcing mechanism/process but rapid warming/climate change can be caused by positive feedback mechanisms involving natural and anthropocentric greenhouse gases or other effects such as albedo.


From: Edmonton | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 16 December 2007 04:51 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Policywonk:
The objective is not to reduce emissions per unit of economic activity (emissions intensity), but to reduce them absolutely.
The objective is to reduce emissions absolutely, of course, but unless we are content to see a 75% reduction in world emissions levels accompanied by a 75% reduction in world economic activity, ways must be found to reduce emissions intensity as well as absolute levels of emissions.

There's nothing "odious" about that. What's odious is when governments like Harper's pretend that reducing emissions intensity, while simultaneously allowing absolute emissions to rise, is going to solve the problem.

Do you deny that countries with relatively high emission intensities should be looking for ways to lower them?


From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
500_Apples
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posted 16 December 2007 05:03 PM      Profile for 500_Apples   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Policywonk:

Enhancing the greenhouse effect through the addition of anthropocentric greenhouse gases is a forcing mechanism/process but rapid warming/climate change can be caused by positive feedback mechanisms involving natural and anthropocentric greenhouse gases or other effects such as albedo.


Yes I wasn't born yesterday,
But none of those speeds compare to the CFC-Ozone reaction rate, and they're all slow enough that we should not pretend hectare-based emissions make sense.


From: Montreal, Quebec | Registered: Jun 2006  |  IP: Logged
Brian White
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posted 16 December 2007 06:24 PM      Profile for Brian White   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I think the ultimate goal IS to have every country on Earth equal in their per-capita GHG emissions. Otherwise we are screwed.
Pretending that inductrialized countrys cannot equal agricultural countrys is not fair.
In agriculture, you got cows belching and other stuff going on. Industry can be a hell of a lot more efficient. Just having the workers within 10 minutes walk of the factories is one part of it.
This WILL happen if CO2 emmissions are taxxed accordingly. People have to start viewing society as a single entity. We have to remodel society to be more efficient in the use of energy.
Lets face it, all anyone needs to do in life is to screw. It is the prime directive. Relieves a hell of a lot of stress and keeps people happy.
All you need to have good sex is 3 or 4 meals a day and bingo bango, healthy exersize!
Well, you dont need to travel half way across the world to have sex. Canada dont need to get toys all made in china or import rocks and faux rock from america, or china. We have to go back to being halfway self sufficient. This can happen rather smoothely when the tax system adjusts accordingly. All the crap that makes modern life what it is can be manefactured locally with less energy in the production and transport of it.
It is daft for people to be spending an hour getting to work and going home every day. most of that time could be spent shagging.
I know this is pretty shallow but really life is not that complicated. a lot of the extra stuff is not really needed at all.
Brian

quote:
Originally posted by M. Spector:

It's only "obvious" if you assume that per capita emissions are what counts. I think it's far from obvious. Both France and India have a lot of work to do to reduce emissions.

Comparisons are not as simple as you make them out. It's apples and oranges; comparing countries that are predominantly agricultural with countries that are predominantly industrial, for example, requires more than just per-capita statistics.

Is the ultimate goal to have every country on Earth equal in their per-capita GHG emissions? I don't think so.

[ 16 December 2007: Message edited by: M. Spector ]



From: Victoria Bc | Registered: Jan 2005  |  IP: Logged
Policywonk
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posted 16 December 2007 06:36 PM      Profile for Policywonk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Do you deny that countries with relatively high emission intensities should be looking for ways to lower them?

No, but only as a by-product of reducing emissions absolutely, or limiting emissions growth while alleviating poverty (for countries with low per-capita emissions and low absolute emissions).

GNP may be much less than GDP if much of the income from a country’s production flows to foreign persons or firms, hence the bias against many if not all developing countries. That and the inability of GDP or GNP to measure social or environmental health very well, if at all, make both measures and those related to them, such as emission "intensity" not particularly useful, if not necessarily odious.


From: Edmonton | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Policywonk
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posted 16 December 2007 06:59 PM      Profile for Policywonk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
But none of those speeds compare to the CFC-Ozone reaction rate, and they're all slow enough that we should not pretend hectare-based emissions make sense.

I don't think that hectare-based emissions make sense either, partly because the size of a country is only one factor in the energy used in transportation. The rate of climate change feedback mechanisms to CFC convection/diffusion, breakdown and reaction with ozone of the products is irrelevant because the rate of change comparison should be with the ability of societies and ecosystems to adapt to climate change. Which is not to say that warming at the surface isn't related to cooling aloft, which is bad for ozone depletion.


From: Edmonton | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Policywonk
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posted 16 December 2007 07:03 PM      Profile for Policywonk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Is the ultimate goal to have every country on Earth equal in their per-capita GHG emissions? I don't think so.

The goal is to equitably reduce GHG emissions, which would result in a far more equitable rate of per-capita GHG emissions.


From: Edmonton | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
jester
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posted 16 December 2007 07:49 PM      Profile for jester        Edit/Delete Post
Why is it that these climate potlucks are always held near the beach?

Do the delegates not consider Inuvik or Reikyavik worthy?

These delegates have hastened thedemise of the earth with their selfish and unseemly carbon footprint,flying around the world for an exotic beach to hold their gabfest.

Why can't the hypocrites teleconference?


From: Against stupidity, the Gods themselves contend in vain | Registered: Jan 2006  |  IP: Logged
M. Spector
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posted 16 December 2007 08:24 PM      Profile for M. Spector   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
George Monbiot interviewed by Sonali Kolhatkar (excerpt):
quote:
Kolhatkar: Why is it that even the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is looking at science that seems to be out of date?

Monbiot: One of the really frightening things that we’re discovering about climate change is that the events are overtaking the science and as quickly as people can research the events, the events move on. For example at the moment, we have a rate of growth in carbon emissions which outstrips even the IPCC’s worst case scenario. So, when the panel says we’ve got this very high case where there would be a great deal of emissions – and we call that the A1F1 case – we’re actually finding that right now it’s worse than that.

But we’re also seeing that there are various effects called “feedbacks” which the panel hasn’t yet taken into account - it intends to do so in the future - but they greatly accelerate climate change. A positive feedback is a process that accelerates itself and there are several of these which take place as far as climate change is concerned. For example, when the oceans get warmer, less carbon dioxide can be absorbed in the water. It’s just like a bottle of Coca-Cola – as you warm it up, the carbon dioxide outgasses because it’s a simple physical property of water that it can hold less gas when it warms up. As that takes place, that carbon dioxide enters the atmosphere and makes the oceans even warmer and so less carbon dioxide is absorbed by them and thus the process goes on. It’s these feedbacks that the IPCC admits have not yet been taken into account when calculating the necessary cut. Taken into account, the cut could be even worse.

Kolhatkar: Given the real numbers, the Kyoto Protocol and its call for cuts of about 5% of carbon emissions below 1990 levels in the next 5 years, sound ludicrous now.

Monbiot: It’s a complete joke, to be honest. And, not only are the numbers completely out of scale by more than an order of magnitude with the necessary cut, but not even that cut is being achieved! Not even the 5% is being achieved! The Kyoto Protocol has failed. And, I hate to say this but it’s failed because primarily of the position taken by the U.S. delegation during the negotiations in 1997. And, I hate to say this even more but that delegation was led by Al Gore. And what Gore negotiated was the institutional failure of the Kyoto Protocol. And he undermined it primarily by creating some different standards for different nations. He was talking about the U.S. making a cut against what it would otherwise have produced, rather than a cut from the carbon levels which were already taking place, which is a whole different ballgame. And he also said there’s got to be emissions trading - we’ve got to be able to buy cuts from other nations and that’s been incredibly destructive to the effectiveness of the Kyoto Protocol.



From: One millihelen: The amount of beauty required to launch one ship. | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Left Turn
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posted 17 December 2007 01:09 AM      Profile for Left Turn     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Brian White:
I think the ultimate goal IS to have every country on Earth equal in their per-capita GHG emissions. Otherwise we are screwed.

I would argue that is not the goal.

Reducing carbon emissions costs money, either in lost economic activity, or in the money required to replace carbon intensive technologies with non-carbon technologies. Industrialized countries can afford to do this, provided they can abandon the notion that they can reduce their GHG emissions while maintaining a capitalist economy.

third world nations, on the other hand, cannot afford to reduce their GHG emissions. They have not the money to replace carbon intensive technologies with non-carbon technologies. N'or can they accept a significant reduction in their economic activity, because in most third world nations it would leave their populations supceptible to mass starvations. Indeed, in countries where mass starvations are a regular occurence in the here and now, those nations must be allowed to increase their GHG emissions to deal with this problem.

Indeed, 95% of the world's GHG emissions come from only 56 countries. The remaining countries account for only 5% of the world's GHG emissions. Thus the 56 countries that account for 95% of the world's GHG emissions have a responsability for at least 95% of the world's GHG emission reductions, likely more like 98-100%.

The goal of reducing GHG emissions is to prevent mass starvation and mass extinction from catastrophic global warming. It is morally wrong for reductions in GHG emissions to be the cause of increased mass starvation in developing nations.


From: Burnaby, BC | Registered: Mar 2005  |  IP: Logged
toddsschneider
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posted 17 December 2007 06:01 AM      Profile for toddsschneider     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
"Corporate Canada braces for new rules on emissions"

http://tinyurl.com/2vhsyu

quote:
Canadian corporations can expect growing pressure in the coming years to reduce greenhouse gas emissions beyond what the federal government has already pledged after Ottawa reluctantly accepted new targets at an international climate change conference in Bali ...

The Conservative government is now finalizing regulations for large industrial emitters and for the auto industry as part of its plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20 per cent from 2006 levels by 2020 ...

But before the ink is even dry on those rules, Canada will be facing pressure to cut further and faster - which will inevitably result in new demands on business, Christine Schuh, director of sustainable business practices for PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP in Calgary, said yesterday ...



From: Montreal, Canada | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 17 December 2007 06:38 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Left Turn:
I would argue that is not the goal.

[SNIP]

Indeed, 95% of the world's GHG emissions come from only 56 countries. The remaining countries account for only 5% of the world's GHG emissions. Thus the 56 countries that account for 95% of the world's GHG emissions have a responsability for at least 95% of the world's GHG emission reductions, likely more like 98-100%.


That’s all the per-capita standard measures: Those 56 countries have very, very high per-capita emission rates relative to the remaining 150-some countries in the world.

And, then, within those 56 countries, how do you determine how to allocate the responsibility of the overall reduction for those countries? Again, on a per-capita basis. Of the largest countries in the world, the USA has the highest per-capita rate (and would thus have the biggest decrease to shoulder).

If not on a per-capita basis, how would you allocate responsibility?


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
Sven
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posted 17 December 2007 06:47 AM      Profile for Sven     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by toddsschneider:
"Corporate Canada braces for new rules on emissions"

It’s a dream to think it’s just “corporate Canada” that has to brace for new emission rules. The reductions will be severe and painful for 99% of Canadian individuals as well—excepting, of course, those who enjoy living an acutely austere lifestyle. That’s the reality that too many advocates of change regarding global warming fail to articulate. So, too many people think that they will have to just do without some worthless “plastic widgets and gadgets” and that the changes will impose only minor changes in their lives when, in fact, the changes will be dramatic and intense.


From: Eleutherophobics of the World...Unite!!!!! | Registered: Jul 2005  |  IP: Logged
M.Gregus
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posted 17 December 2007 06:59 AM      Profile for M.Gregus     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Closing for length - feel free to continue in a new thread.
From: capital region | Registered: Oct 2006  |  IP: Logged

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