In 2005 the so-called Kyoto protocol went into force, requiring most of the developed nations to begin serious reductions in their production of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHGs). The protocol was designed to last until the end of 2012. It specifically left out reduction requirements for developing countries such as China, Brazil, and India. The European Union countries began specific and varied steps to implement the protocols; the United States did not.
Today what is supposed to be a determined attempt to expand the Kyoto protocols beyond 2012 begins in Durban South Africa. The outlook for success is not bright. For example, Japan, one of the major leaders in development of the Kyoto protocol, has said that it would not support a second commitment beyond 2012. So what began as an important effort by world governments to slow the rate of global warming is in real danger of suffocating. Rather than taking an energetic step forward, the participants are in danger of death by ennui.
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