Waiting on US?

As it nears closer to the conference, and Obama is confirmed to attend, it only further provokes the question: How involved with the United States be in finding a collective resolution with the other parties?

An article on the Yale 360 Blog addresses this question with a bit of skepticism and uncertainty about what the US will take from the conference.

“We now know that Obama will arrive on Dec. 9 en route to Oslo, and that he will offer roughly a 17 percent cut in 2005 emissions levels by 2020. That would be about a zero percent cut from 1990 levels; in other words, not very ambitious — the absolute minimum for saving face, but not enough to save the world.”

This mindset is precisely the reason why involvement of young Americans in this conference is paramount in building awareness and implementation of the Kyoto Protocol. Without the United State’s support it has proven the unlikelihood of other high carbon footprint emitters such as China and India committing to the goals put forth at the conference.

This isn’t the first example of America being stubborn, it could be attributed to the founding of our country. Although if the US waits and fails to act on these issues it has the ability to disconnect with the rest of the world.


One thought on “Waiting on US?

  1. Matt

    Just a few comments. A minor technical issue, China and India did sign the Kyoto protocol (as did the US actually), I think you meant the upcoming “Copenhagen Treaty” or whatever its going to be called.

    Obama and America as whole aren’t stubborn, just prudent. Your right however regarding the founding of our country. Ratification in the US requires a two-thirds majority vote in the Senate. That means all 60 democrats and 6 Republicans, somewhat unlikely. Maybe 17% below 2005 is nearly as far as Obama thinks he can go and hold out hope for ratification, maybe its a starting negotiating position, who knows. I just don’t see how any treaty acceptable to the developing world will be acceptable to the US Senate. Clinton signed Kyoto, but how far did that get us.

    Maybe the conference will be more about Adaptation and less about Mitigation. Might be prudent, I think Denmark is a low-lying country.


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