Essay about Kyoto

2373 Words 10 Pages
Is the Kyoto Protocol the Wrong Approach?

Climate change is a relevant issue today that should be on the minds of people. In 1972, scientists discovered that CFC’s (chlorofluorocarbons) might destroy the ozone layer. In 1985, scientists discovered that the destruction of the ozone layer was occurring quite rapidly and recommended that country leaders should take action as soon as possible to decrease CFC levels. In 1987, in Montreal, representatives from all over the world, came together to ban CFC’s. This was the first successful collective action taken against global warming. But now the problem is larger than just banning the gas from refrigerators. The world continues to warm fast enough to alarm geologists, meteorologists, and others
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The treaty focuses the most on the reduction of the carbon dioxide emissions. However, methane gas is also a very powerful greenhouse gas that should be treated with the same priority as the carbon dioxide. The reason why they are not giving so much importance to methane is because methane gas only stays in the atmosphere for a period of 10 years, whereas carbon dioxide stays for a period of 100 years. Also, methane can be cleaned more easily: fixing natural gas pipes, putting more soil on landfills, and feeding the cows with something that does not give them so much gas (Tennesen 219).
However, the Kyoto Protocol is flawed because not all the countries ratified to the agreement. For instance, the United States and Australia, who are major pollutants of carbon dioxide, did not ratify the agreement. The United States emits around 25 percent of the world’s total carbon dioxide emissions. Even though the United States took part in the argument to build up the treaty, it didn’t ratify, because its major excuse is that developing countries are not obligated to meet the targets of the Protocol. The United States said that at least developing countries should get into the accord even if the targets allowed an increase in their emissions of carbon dioxide. The biggest setback to the process was on the Bush administration in the year of 2001, in spite of the evidence on global warming and the important role that they…

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