Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

The Two Views of COP21

with 3 comments

Paris infogrpahic

Robert Stavins thinks it is a Good Foundation for Meaningful Progress and provides a good analysis of his reasons.

On the other hand both Bill McKibben and Naomi Klein are not impressed, although I seem to recall seeing reports they had each decided that before the final agreement was announced. Klein has a really nice turn of phrase

“It’s like going: ‘I acknowledge that I will die of a heart attack if I don’t radically lower my blood pressure. I acknowledge that in order to do that I need to cut out alcohol, fatty foods and exercise every day. I therefore will exercise once a week, eat four hamburgers instead of five and only binge drink twice a week and you have to call me a hero because I’ve never done this before and you have no idea how lazy I used to be.'”

UPDATE David Roberts on VOX explains why the Paris treaty is about as good as the UN can manage – which may or may not be enough to start the process of change –  which depends on the nations not UNO

Written by Stephen Rees

December 14, 2015 at 4:23 pm

Posted in greenhouse gas reduction

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3 Responses

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  1. The addict has admitted they have a problem. That’s the first step. They are meeting (I believe) every 5 years to review progress and I believe it will be these where things will ratchet up.


    December 14, 2015 at 6:29 pm

  2. The real problem is that everyone is in favour of someone else doing something about carbon. They themselves want to continue to grow. Logic would say that something doesn’t compute here (but who expects politicians to be logical?) We are now facing an existential threat that may only be solvable by declaring that anyone who actually wants the job should be ineligible to serve.

    GDP is calculated (incorrectly, I believe) on the basis of consumption, yet carbon production is calculated on the basis of… production. I suggest that that should be the other way around. It doesn’t matter where something is made, if I buy it that is still part of my carbon footprint, and the only way we are going to cut carbon output is by cutting consumption – in the countries where most consumption occurs. Doing that will solve (in one way) the problem of all these developing countries that want to industrialize on the backs of manufactured exports and thus claim that they have the right to enjoy some of the fruits of the “good life”, because if there is nobody buying their stuff, then nobody is going to be burning carbon. I expect business to fight this tooth and nail: imagine a world where nobody buys something they don’t actually need….

    Richard Smiley

    December 15, 2015 at 9:56 am

  3. Carbon measurement is not necessarily based on production. BC produces fossil fuels and then exports them: only the extraction (and the trivial amount of processing) counts towards our GHG. When the fuel is burned, that counts against the country that uses it. So Christy can be so proud of all that coal we ship to China – and thinks that fracked natural gas will be even better! And of course all that coal extracted from public lands in the US also for export, that Washington and Oregon have refused to ship through their ports, will now be going through ours.

    Stephen Rees

    December 15, 2015 at 10:21 am

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