Features
The aim of this special edition  
[The Enactment of the Kyoto Protocol and the Future of Preventive Measures Against Gloval Warning]
Hiroshi Bandow
Professor, Graduate School of  Engineering,
Osaka Prefecture University

In response to the ratification by Russia, the Kyoto Protocol came into force in February this year. Industrialized countries have had an obligation to take concrete, efficient measures towards the reduction targets which must be achieved during the period 2008 to 2012. All things considered, the central issue of preventive measures against global warming is the reduction in CO2 emissions. In trying to realize this, the difficulty we face is not merely technical problems, such as various reductions in CO2 emissions by improving the usability of energy resources, but is also that CO2 emissions are directly linked to energy resources that are the basis for modern society and economic activities. A policy and national strategy needs to incorporate various issues, and adjustments are needed as follows: 1) The policy needs to address the desires and satisfaction of individuals (qualified voters) who enjoy economic development and the benefits of material wealth. 2) Economic development needs to be fostered by trading emissions between nations and to introduce advanced technologies such as The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) to developing countries. 3) National strategies need to be developed, such as energy security. Compared with other environmental problems on a global scale, such as acid rain or ozone layer depletion caused by chlorofluorocarbons, the global warming issue has a much wider range, due to its affects on socio-economic burdens and the need to curtail the use of causative agents and create new alternatives. We need to balance conflicting interests and compromise, whether it is at an individual or a state level.

On this special website, three specialists wrote papers for the following reasons: 1) To summarize the problems of the measure as follows: What form should the framework against warming take? Moreover, how will each country and the countries which ratified the Protocol be accountable, especially the Asian areas experiencing remarkable economic growth (including the use of CDM etc.)? Is effectiveness expected when there is no organized policy on a worldwide scale? 2) To review the present measures against global warming and predict the effects of global warming.

I would like to describe what I noticed after I read their documents before I write about the aim of this special project on global warming. Based on the similarity between the three specialists who study impact assessment and the measures taken against global warming, the central issue seems to be what will be done from 2008 to 2012. They reminded me that we need to study and discuss this, taking plenty of time to look at the long-term outcome.

As I mentioned above, I am interested in the actions that will be taken to achieve the targets during the period 2008 to 2012 and the present impact assessment against global warming in response to the enactment of the Kyoto Protocol earlier this year. Such an argument must have been examined and discussed fully at the Kyoto meeting by each country. Otherwise, it is impossible for the ratified countries to ratify the Protocol when each country must protect its profits. Even if we look back upon the progress of the related matters to the global warming issue of our country from such a viewpoint, could we say that our government examined and discussed it as much as possible and ratified the Kyoto Protocol with a national strategy and a clear vision as a nation? The fact that the total amount of CO2 emissions in our country increased after the Kyoto conference is the clear answer to this question.


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