While we where doing our study case about «Droughts in Australia », I founded some information that said that Australia along with the United States refuses to sign Kyoto’s Protocol, and it fills me with a big curiosity of “why?”.
The Kyoto Protocol is an agreement made under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Countries that ratify this protocol commit to reduce their emissions of carbon dioxide and five other greenhouse gases, or engage in emissions trading if they maintain or increase emissions of these gases.
The objective is the “stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system.”
Australia is the world’s largest exporter of coal. Burning coal produces more carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas restricted under the protocol, than any other major fuel. Prime minister, John Howard argued: “Signing the protocol would cause a flight of jobs from this country and damage in our industry.”” due to countries with booming economies and massive populations such as China and India not having any reduction obligations. Also, the Government takes the view that Australia is already doing enough to cut emissions they recently compromised $300 million over the next three years to reduce Greenhouse gas emissions.
The United States is the 2005 largest single emitter of carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels. The current President, George W. Bush, has indicated that he does not intend to submit the treatment for ratification, not because he does not support the Kyoto principles, but because of the exemption granted to China, the world’s second largest emitter of carbon dioxide. Bush also opposes the treatment because he believes it would put the US economy in risk.
Knowing more information about this countries, made me understand their positions. And before today, my impression was that they were wrong.