What am I going to do today for Kyoto? I won't drive, I will use my bike.
Ok, I will turn down the thermostat, reduce my electriciy useage by turning off lights and using the stove and hot water carefully;
I will also eliminate or reduce my purchases of things that use a lot of energy to produce or need to be transported a long ways.
And if we all did that, it would make a difference. Dont buy new cars until they produce a responsible one!!
Personal responsibility is needed, but its not enough.
Industrial emissions is what Kyoto targets need to get onside.
60% of the world's emissions are in the Kyoto accord, and even with the USA not participating we still have a lot to work with. But the USA is doing several things to reduce emissions too, voluntarily and so on. So is China. They wil need some encouragement from Kyto participants to do more, and I suspect they will when the rest of us are on board.
So dont' give up, lets not be hopeless about it despite the fact that we are way too late to make this easy on us or the planet. We have to face the reality of it without giving up.
We knew in the 1960's that the limit for emissions was being reached, and sure enough, it is actually the 1960s levels of emissions that are sustainable levels. 1990 levels - the target of Kyoto, are just a start, a bare minimum.
Also, we have waited until the "cascade effects" have begun. Cascade effects are where the changes due to warming actually cause MORE warming, like when the tundra melts it then absorbs sunlight and gives off CO2 instead of reflecting sunlight, which makes a huge difference... or when the ocean plankton die off from 'too-warm' conditions, they don't absorb CO2 and actually give off CO2 instead of oxygen.
" We told ya so!" - way back in the 1960s we knew of these problems, and urged industry to start reducing back then.
Also, there is the health factors. Health damaging pollution, responsible for the huge increases in asthma, cancers, etc., are all related to fossil fuels emissions and that became the default reasoning for emissions reductions if climate was changing naturally and Kyoto would not stop that, as they argued.
So much suffering from health problems, and so many hard choices and economic concerns, could have been avoided if we had acted faster, sooner.
Would the economy have failed to develop if we restricted emissions 50 years ago? perhaps, but that might have been a good thing - rising too fast just caused inflation, and the 1980s currency crisis was due to that "too fast" growth which oil helped inspire.
There is no doubt - we should have acted sooner.
There is no doubt that we should support Kyoto now.
... and sure, we should all do our part individually Rev. That will tell politicians that we are serious and willing to sacrifice to meet this largest of goals.
Do your part for Kyoto, and encourage others, esp industry, to do it too.
Russia, other stories here:
Media stories on Kyoto -
Beyond Oil -
Int. Inst. for Sustainable development: