William Nordhaus of Yale University writes for foreign affairs and thinks about how to remedy the failure of the world`s climate efforts. Yes, there is broad consensus within the scientific community, although some deny that climate change is a problem, including politicians in the United States. When negotiating teams meet for international climate talks, “there is less skepticism about science and more disagreement about how to set priorities,” said David Victor, professor of international relations at the University of California, San Diego. The basic science is that: This CFR timeline has been following UN climate talks since 1992. At least once a century, the Arctic would experience an ice-free summer, which has not been done in at least two thousand years. Forty per cent of permafrost in the Arctic would thaw by the end of the century. CFR`s World101 Library explains everything you need to know about climate change. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), 1992. The pioneering agreement [PDF] was ratified by 197 countries, including the United States, and was the first global treaty to explicitly address climate change. It has created an annual forum known as the Conference of the Parties (COP) for international discussions aimed at stabilizing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere. These meetings produced the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement.
The ocean is changing. Up to 90% of coral reefs would be eradicated and the oceans would become more acidic. Fishing around the world would be much less productive. Kyoto Protocol, 2005. The Kyoto Protocol [PDF], adopted in 1997 and entered into force in 2005, was the first legally binding climate treaty. It called on industrialized countries to reduce emissions by an average of 5% from 1990 levels and set up a system to monitor countries` progress. But the treaty did not force developing countries, including the major CO2 emitters China and India, to take action. The United States signed the agreement in 1998, but never ratified it and then withdrew its signature.
However, China and India are now, along with the United States, among the world`s largest annual emitters. Developed countries have argued that these countries must now do more to address climate change. If countries strengthen their commitments and the United States takes over the treaty, some experts hope that the Paris agreement could reduce emissions fairly quickly.