I am all for living greener. In fact, I am working on a plan to not only change my life in that direction, but to assist others to do the same. Consequently, you would think that I would be all for the Kyoto Summit. I’m not. This seems counter intuitive – a guy who is all about going green and “saving the earth” (btw this concept is a joke in itself – the Earth isn’t going anywhere – humans are) should be all for a world summit that is all about talking about all countries going greener. The issue is that the summit really isn’t getting it done and to date it never has.
The Kyoto Summit was this idea about bringing the world leaders together to work as a team at reducing green house gases – the stuff that is supposedly destroying life on Earth as we know it. Let’s let the Kyoto folks tell you their concept:
“The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement linked to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which commits its Parties by setting internationally binding emission reduction targets.
Recognizing that developed countries are principally responsible for the current high levels of GHG emissions in the atmosphere as a result of more than 150 years of industrial activity, the Protocol places a heavier burden on developed nations under the principle of “common but differentiated responsibilities.”
The Kyoto Protocol was adopted in Kyoto, Japan, on 11 December 1997 and entered into force on 16 February 2005. The detailed rules for the implementation of the Protocol were adopted at COP 7 in Marrakesh, Morocco, in 2001, and are referred to as the “Marrakesh Accords.” Its first commitment period started in 2008 and ended in 2012.” – (Kyoto!)
How could that possibly be a joke? Simple really, nobody is actually doing anything. Sure there is lots of talk, Obama just did a great bit on it.
…..but…. What does it really mean?
If you pay attention to the entire bit, and NPR.org did as they covered the story just this morning on Air, you will notice something interesting. During their broadcast they pointed to some smaller, developing countries and how Kyoto impacts them. One of their leaders, from Aruba, talked a bit about how awesome it is for the developed nations to tell everyone that they need to cut back emissions when it was those developed countries that created the problem to begin with. Obama said that everyone has to do their part. True. However, to developing nations point, why is it that they suddenly have to change how they are developing because large, developed, and often times greedy countries created a massive problem for the planet by ignoring what was being done to the climate for so long?
The answer is simple, and it is the same answer that the Developed Nations have been ignoring for so long: We Live Here. That’s right! The planet that you live on, and require certain conditions to be stable, is totally out of whack and humans are largely responsible – anyone that says otherwise is either delusional or a greedy bastard. Seriously. You live on this giant rock that floats through space at an alarming rate, and it keeps you alive via oceans, food, plants, bio diversity, bees (we are killing these off, no big deal unless you like to eat), and a myriad of other things (Atmosphere much?) and thus you sort of need it to persist, else you stop persisting.
Therein lies the joke, really. We NEED change, we are way past wanting it. We all have to do our part, but the developed countries, the ones that caused the problem in the first place, need to step up and do most of it. To demand that under developed countries make dramatic changes when they are a tiny fraction of the whole is actually absurd. Think about this: The islands of the Caribbean, many being nations of their own, put out less than 1% of what China does every year in carbon footprint, and yet they must change as much as the big five? They must be held just as responsible? Seems silly when you look at it that way – but they can do their part.
The truth is the burden of world clean up should be on the offenders. Aruba isn’t creating a massive amount of plastic and tossing it in the ocean. They aren’t mass polluting the planet. They aren’t putting out a ludicrous amount of toxic gases through concrete manufacturing (China again). Aruba isn’t fracking the ground to oblivion. In fact, they really aren’t do much of anything. sure they have like 300 cars on the road there that probably don’t have emissions controls on them. Los Angeles has like 10 million. Sure they have cruise ships going into their harbor, like 1-2 per day. LA harbor’s ships put out over 1 million cars worth of emissions per day.
Starting to see the silliness? The Joke? Sure, we can all do our part, but the big boys, the destroyers of worlds, need to get it done first and foremost – in closing, they need to lead by example.