Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Green Agreements

As you may have heard, the G8 nations have at last agreed on a target for reducing emissions of greenhouse gases. It's good in that the US has agreed, although in all other respects it seems to be a retrograde step. It seems to support the idea without giving an actual commitment, the target is a 50% reduction by 2050, but the base year appears to be 2005 rather than 1990 (used by the UN) and there is no interim target, which many see as essential to have any hope of achieving targets in 2050. Still, it's progress for the G8 and there is a recognition that shorter-term targets are also required.

By contrast, Reuters reports that the European Union has reached agreement to include air travel in the EU's Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) from 2012. The European parliament has apparently agreed a 3% reduction in carbon emissions in the first year and 5% a year from 2013. As might be expected, the airlines are protesting loudly whilst environmentalists say it's far too weak.

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