Tags: Gore's | Kyoto | Hypocrisy

Al Gore's Kyoto Hypocrisy

Wednesday, 22 September 2004 12:00 AM

While I applaud Al Gore’s position on global warming, I don’t support ratification of the Kyoto Protocol. Apparently, I am in good company in opposing that Protocol as currently written, as I laid out in a letter to The Times Book Review that stated in part:

The Kyoto Protocol imposes limits on the expansion of fossil fuel use and requires cutbacks. The countries most affected by the limitations or cutbacks called for by Kyoto are the developed countries, primarily the United States, which uses 25 percent of the world’s gasoline, and to a lesser degree, Japan, Russia and the European Union.

In response to my letter criticizing Gore for urging support of Kyoto, Gore wrote to The Times as follows:

Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia wrote Resolution S. 98 that opposed ratification of Kyoto if it did not comply with certain concerns, the primary one being the exemption of developing nations like China and India from its requirements. The resolution was passed on July 25, 1997. The text of the Kyoto Protocol was ready for signature at the United Nations headquarters on March 16, 1998. The Protocol has not yet been ratified by Russia, whose signature is needed before it can become effective and binding on all signers.

As recently as October 30, 2003, Senator Byrd stated, “The Kyoto Protocol, in its current form, does not comply with the requirements of Senate Resolution 98.” He continued: “S. Res. 98 directed that any such treaty must include new scheduled commitments for the developing world in addition to any such requirements for industrialized nations but requirements would be binding and mandatory and lead to real reductions in the emissions of greenhouse gases over time. This is clearly different than the minimal, vague, and voluntary commitments that we are currently pursuing.”

This was a reference to the Bush Administration. Byrd also emphasized that “developing nations, especially the largest emitters, need to be a part of any binding global climate change treaty.”

President Clinton and Al Gore were unsuccessful in getting the signers of Kyoto to include the developing nations. Knowing that the Kyoto Protocol would not be passed without the inclusion of developing countries in some way, Clinton did not even send the Protocol to the U.S. Senate for ratification.

Gore now blames Bush for not getting the parties of the Protocol to include developing countries under its mandates. This is an outcome which neither he nor Clinton had been able to accomplish during their eight years of office from 1993 to 2001. How could Bush be expected to succeed where they had failed?

China has since surpassed Japan in its use and importation of the world’s major energy source, oil, ranking second in use after the U.S. China is now one of the largest manufacturers of automobiles, with millions of new buyers joining those already in line to buy its Cadillac and Volkswagens and many other foreign brands licensed for manufacture in China. The aggregate population of China and India is in excess of 2 billion people.

Should we sign the Kyoto Protocol in its current form, as Al Gore appears to be urging, if those nations which have signed it decline to renegotiate the Protocol and include the developing nations? I don’t think so, and I don’t think you will find a single U.S. senator who urges that we do so under these conditions.

Senator John Kerry should be asked if he as president would submit the flawed Protocol to the Senate for ratification and if he were still senator would he vote for it.


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While I applaud Al Gore's position on global warming, I don't support ratification of the Kyoto Protocol.Apparently, I am in good company in opposing that Protocol as currently written, as I laid out in a letter to The Times Book Review that stated in part: The Kyoto...
Wednesday, 22 September 2004 12:00 AM
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