Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Bali high - or ballyhoo?

Now that Australia has ratified the Kyoto Protocol, I'd expect that Kyoto-related debate and discussion in Australia would focus on:
  1. Can we meet our emissions targets in the first commitment period (2008 - 2012)?
  2. What happens after 2012? What will the new Kyoto Protocol or alternative post-Kyoto agreement look like?

For the first issue, the die is really cast: there's not much we can change now in terms of domestic policy that will pay big dividends within the next 5 years.

The Bali conference will kick off international discussions on the second issue - probably one of the most important things to get right in the coming century.

What do you think should be the essential ingredients of Kyoto Protocol Mark II?


Grant said...

I'm not sure what an international agreement can include other than deeper cuts. I'd like to see cuts with enforceable targets (80% by 2050 is minimum - and behind current forecasts) - but set up incrementally - i.e. smaller percentage targets in 1-5 year blocks - no more "we'll deal with it next election cycle" rubbish...

I'd like to see something in there around renewable energy targets (no new nuclear, clean coal only as a retrofit option) and a clear focus on efficiency and other "negative cost" options to achieve short-term targets.

Carbon trading should remain a key part of any agreements to support developing countries developing more cleanly. Either that or some other form of capital transfer (through taxes etc.)

International treaty on airlines would also be interesting to see, as they currently fall outside international agreements.

All this is pie-in-the-sky stuff to me - I don't see much of it happening. Perhaps a slight increase in reduction targets, and more difficulties getting consensus and the US engaged...

David Jeffery said...

Thanks Grant.

Is it being a bit precious to tell other countries they can't use nuclear or clean coal to reduce their emissions?

Air travel really has to be covered.

How do we work our a fair way of distributing the burden of emission cuts?