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Better Late than Never

December 9, 2009

Well, it took some time, but the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finally came to the conclusion yesterday that “climate change pollution threatens public health and welfare” and that greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide should be regulated.

President Obama is expected to announce at COP15 that the US will cut emissions by 17 percent by 2020, except the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change recommends that “developed countries cut emissions by between 25 to 40 percent of 1990 levels.”

Developed countries have found a loophole to get around this recommendation. Instead of cutting their own emissions, they’ll just pass the buck by secretly drafting their own agreement, which “sets unequal limits on per capita carbon emissions for developed and developing countries.” Also, they will pay those developing countries $10 billion a year to fund these cuts, but it really should be more along the lines of $500 to $600 billion per year.

It makes perfect sense to take this logical course of action. If the environmental body of your government concludes that something is harmful to its citizens, then the right thing to do is marginally reduce that something in your own country, while surreptitiously “asking” others to reduce it more in their own respective countries because that will benefit your citizens. Brett Gurewitz was right. “Ratiocination is a practicable way to derive.”

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