Industrialized nations

The dominant, but critically debated opinion is that human emissions of greenhouse gasses (GHG) and primarily carbon dioxide (C02) have resulted in an unnatural warming trend of the Earth that will continue, and result in negative impacts on human and natural ecosystems unless GHG emissions (and thus concentrations in the atmosphere) are sufficiently reduced. The dominant policy currently in existence to address this perceived threat is the Kyoto Protocol, an agreement among nations worldwide that assigns a responsibility for greenhouse gas emissions reductions to many of the wealthy, developed, and industrialized nations.

The Kyoto Protocol entered into force in February of 2005, and mandates that agreed upon emissions reductions in each country must be achieved by the first commitment period, occurring over the years 2008-2012. With only a few years before nations are well into the first commitment period, it is becoming clear that some countries are performing better at achieving emissions reductions than others. The government of Canada has recently indicated that meeting its target under the Protocol is not feasible.

Meanwhile, emissions in other countries such as Russia and the Ukraine are so far below their agreed upon reduction targets that these two countries stand to sell billions of dollars worth of excess emissions credits on the international market, and this fact is alarming, especially for developing countries, like Philippines, because they will be the major victim of C02 (carbon dioxide) emissions. The popular media has advanced several hypotheses why some countries are progressing further towards agreed upon commitments than others.

Off-the-cuff explanations include a lack of political will, a failure of citizens to recognize the purported severity of the problem, the influence of so-called “environmental alarmist” groups, or the influence of so-called “climate skeptics”, which Gelbspan (2004) believes are funded by the fossil fuel industry for the sole purpose of preventing greenhouse gas emissions reductions. However, more rigorous and scientific analysis of the factors which affect commitment to the Kyoto Protocol, and environmental policy in general are available in the literature.

Congleton’s (1992) conclusion that political institutions rather than resource endowments determine environmental policy has often been cited in the literature. As a signatory of Kyoto Protocol, under the category of non-Annex I (or developing country), the Philippines is one of the most affected of climate change issue, thus we enter to the force to prevent worsening condition of this issue. Thus, we ask the support of the Taiwanese people in joining our cause in resolving this worldwide issue of climate change.

Taiwan, as a developed country having an advanced economy, will be a perfect voice to communicate our plight throughout the world, especially those developed countries that emit exceptionally large amount of CO2. Climate change issue is not only a domestic issue, it is a worldwide plague that all of us must annihilate.

References:

(Attitudes, 2006, Change. , 2001, Dalton, 2006, Pancoast, 2003, Stem and December 16, 2006, UNFCCC, 2005) Program on International Policy Attitudes. (2006) GlobeScan Poll: Global Views on Climate Change.

Results from Angus Reid Consultants. Accessed on September 1, 2007 at http://www. angus-reid. com/polls/index. cfm/fuseaction/viewItem/itemID/11703. INTEGOVERNMENTAL PANEL on CLIMATE CHANGE. (2001) Third Assessment Report of the International Panel on Climate Change – Climate Change 2001. Accessed on August 31, 2007 at http://www. icpp. ch. DALTON, H. (2006) What science do we need for a sustainable future? Accessed on September 2, 2007 at http://www. defra. gov. uk/science/how/documents/royalcollege. pdf.