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Global Environmental Politics


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Global Environmental Politics

  1. 1. Global Environmental Politics Josh Gellers Global Issues May 26, 2009 St. Louis Post-Dispatch Rush PR News Personal photo
  2. 4. Agenda <ul><li>Climate Change </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Science and the IPCC </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Impacts and Costs </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Montreal Protocol </li></ul><ul><li>Kyoto Protocol </li></ul><ul><li>Global Environmental Policy </li></ul>
  3. 5. Climate Change Science, Impacts, and Costs
  4. 6. Climate Change and Global Warming <ul><li>Climate change refers to any significant change in measures of climate (such as temperature, precipitation, or wind) lasting for an extended period (decades or longer). Climate change may result from: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>natural factors, such as changes in the sun's intensity or slow changes in the Earth's orbit around the sun; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>natural processes within the climate system (e.g. changes in ocean circulation); </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>human activities that change the atmosphere's composition (e.g. through burning fossil fuels) and the land surface (e.g. deforestation, reforestation, urbanization, desertification, etc.) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Global warming is an average increase in the temperature of the atmosphere near the Earth's surface and in the troposphere, which can contribute to changes in global climate patterns. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Global warming can occur from a variety of causes, both natural and human induced. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>In common usage, &quot;global warming&quot; often refers to the warming that can occur as a result of increased emissions of greenhouse gases from human activities. (US EPA) </li></ul></ul>NASA Climate Change Animation
  5. 9. Radiative Forcing of GHGs Source: IPCC TAR
  6. 10. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change <ul><li>IPCC: a scientific intergovernmental body set up by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) in 1988 </li></ul><ul><li>Composed of: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Governments: the IPCC is open to all member countries of WMO and UNEP </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Scientists: hundreds of scientists all over the world contribute to the work of the IPCC as authors, contributors and reviewers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>People: as United Nations body, the IPCC work aims at the promotion of the United Nations human development goals ( ) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Publishes comprehensive assessment reports </li></ul><ul><ul><li>2007: IPCC releases Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) </li></ul></ul>
  7. 13. Humans and Climate <ul><li>Emissions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Greenhouse Gases & Aerosols </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Fossil fuels (Personal & Industry) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Land use </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Land use changes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Agriculture </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deforestation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Urbanization </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Water management & reservoirs </li></ul></ul>
  8. 15. Climate Change and Global Warming <ul><li>Scientists: Fail to make a clear distinction between climate change and BAU </li></ul><ul><li>Media: Balance, integrity, sensationalism </li></ul><ul><li>Special Interests: Disinformation campaigns, focus on profits </li></ul><ul><li>Public: Confused, uninterested </li></ul><ul><li>Government: Post-9/11 withdrawal from Kyoto, Obama promises change, American Clean Energy and Security Act </li></ul>
  9. 16. Climate Change: Uncertainties <ul><li>Strength/tolerance of feedbacks: water vapor feedback, clouds & precipitation efficiency </li></ul><ul><li>Rate of change: abrupt climate change </li></ul><ul><li>Changes in magnitude of intraseasonal-to-interannual variability: ENSO, NAO </li></ul><ul><li>Local effects: i.e. drought in California </li></ul>
  10. 17. Climate Change
  11. 18. Climate Change Impacts
  12. 19. Impacts: Hurricanes <ul><li>A likely increase in hurricane intensity with rising tropical SSTs </li></ul><ul><li>Regions of hurricane origin likely to remain unchanged </li></ul><ul><li>Uncertainty surrounding impacts of increasing SSTs on hurricane frequency </li></ul>
  13. 20. Impacts: Hurricanes Source: IPCC TAR
  14. 21. Impacts: Hurricanes Personal photos
  15. 22. Impacts: Health <ul><li>Projected risk of malaria transmission by 2020, compared with average risk during 1961-1990. </li></ul><ul><li>Assumption: Global temperature increase of 2ºF no human efforts to contain the spread of the disease (Source: Pim Martens, Maastricht University) </li></ul>
  16. 23. Impacts: Global Costs <ul><li>Stern Review (2001) </li></ul><ul><li>Extreme events (storms, hurricanes, typhoons, floods, droughts, heat waves) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>0.5-1% of GDP per year by 2050 ($500 billion to $1 trillion) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>5-10% increase in hurricane strength  2x U.S. annual damages ($100-$150 billion) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>annual U.K. flood losses could increase from 0.1% to 0.2-0.4% of GDP ($23 billion to $47-94 billion) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>heat waves will become common by mid-century (2003 Europe - $15 billion) </li></ul></ul></ul>
  17. 24. Impacts: Global Costs <ul><li>Direct impacts on the environment & human health </li></ul><ul><ul><li>5 - 11% loss </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Climate feedbacks </li></ul><ul><ul><li>5 - 7% </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Disproportionate impacts </li></ul><ul><ul><li>25% greater cost </li></ul></ul><ul><li>TOTAL ~ 20% reduction in GDP </li></ul>
  18. 25. Impacts: Global Costs <ul><li>Solution? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Stabilizing at 550ppm CO 2 e likely to require investment of 1% of global GDP by 2050 </li></ul></ul><ul><li>“the basic conclusion…is that the costs of strong and urgent action to avoid serious impacts from climate change are substantially less than the damages thereby avoided” (Stern Review, 2001) </li></ul>
  19. 26. Hockey Stick Model
  20. 27. Hockey Stick: Affirmative View <ul><li>Validity Claims Overblown </li></ul><ul><li>- Modest title </li></ul><ul><li>- Recognition of proxy limitations </li></ul><ul><li>Scientific Consensus </li></ul><ul><li>- Principle endorsement of NAS </li></ul><ul><li>Conclusion: Uncertainties are stated and the model is undergoing continuous revision. </li></ul><ul><li>The Hockey Stick model does provide an adequate resource for understanding the range of warming we may face in the future. </li></ul>
  21. 28. Hockey Stick: Skeptical View <ul><li>Uncertainties in statistical methods: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Based on insufficient data and flawed stat analysis (McKitrick and McIntyre, Wegman report) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Mann concludes that higher resolution data are needed before ‘more confident conclusions can be reached’ </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>With flaws in model corrected, curves in ‘stick’ reappear, recent temp changes no longer look extraordinary (Bob Tippee, Oil & Gas Journal; Jul 11, 2005) </li></ul></ul></ul>
  22. 29. Multi-model Reconstruction
  23. 30. Climate Change: Uncertainties <ul><li>Difference in recent surface and free atmosphere trends ( Observations ) </li></ul><ul><li>Size of internal variability ( Models ) </li></ul><ul><li>Natural forcing ( Nature ) </li></ul><ul><li>Anthropogenic forcing, especially aerosols ( Man ) </li></ul><ul><li>Estimate of response or sensitivity ( Models ) </li></ul>
  24. 31. Montreal Protocol The Paradigm of Global Environmental Policy
  25. 32. Ozone Regime <ul><li>1930s CFCs are invented </li></ul><ul><li>1974 CFC – Ozone Theory Published </li></ul><ul><li>1977 First International Meeting </li></ul><ul><li>1977 – 1981 Domestic Controls: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>U.S., Canada, Nordic Countries, European Community </li></ul></ul><ul><li>1979 Margaret Thatcher Elected </li></ul><ul><li>1980 Ronald Reagan Elected </li></ul>
  26. 33. Ozone Regime <ul><li>1982 Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee formed </li></ul><ul><li>1983 “Toronto Group” Proposal </li></ul><ul><li>1985 Ozone Hole Discovery published </li></ul><ul><li>1985 Vienna Convention </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Framework treaty </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No controls </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>No mention of CFCs </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  27. 34. Ozone Regime <ul><li>1987 Montreal Protocol </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Centerpiece of the regime </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>50% cuts on 5 CFCs and 3 Halons by 2000 </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>10-year grace party for developing countries (Article 5) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Assessment panels </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Amendment and adjustment procedures </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  28. 35. Global Ozone Layer Protection Policy <ul><li>Key Components </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1985 Vienna Convention </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1987 Montreal Protocol </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Amendments and Adjustments to the Protocol (1990, 1992, 1995, 1997, 1999) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Meetings of Parties (MOP) (Binding decisions) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multilateral Fund </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Assessment Panels: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Science; Environmental Effects; Technical and Economic </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Implementation Committee (non-compliance) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Implementing Agencies: UNEP, World Bank, UNDP, UNIDO </li></ul></ul>
  29. 36. Regime and Policy Structure <ul><li>Pre-emptive (at least originally) </li></ul><ul><li>Control Measures - Clear, Strong, Simple, Binding, Total Phase-Out Goal, Differentiated Responsibilities </li></ul><ul><li>Ability to Grow in Response to New Information </li></ul><ul><li>Assessment Panels </li></ul><ul><li>Financial Mechanism - Multilateral Fund </li></ul><ul><li>Trade Sanctions </li></ul><ul><li>Non-Compliance Procedures </li></ul><ul><li>UNEP as designated regime organization </li></ul><ul><li>Integrated Meetings and Institutions </li></ul>
  30. 37. Source: Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency Montreal Protocol: Results
  31. 38. The Success of the Ozone Regime <ul><li>Global membership </li></ul><ul><li>Strong set of agreed upon rules and implementing institutions </li></ul><ul><li>Production and consumption of almost all ODS (CFCs, etc.) declining on global scale </li></ul><ul><li>Production and Consumption of CFCs and several other ODS nearly eliminated in OECD countries, as required </li></ul><ul><li>Atmospheric concentrations of most ODS stabilized or dropping </li></ul><ul><li>Developing countries largely met CFC freeze in 2000 and most are expected to meet future reductions </li></ul><ul><li>Institutions working well (or well enough): Multilateral Fund; Assessment panels; Non-compliance procedures </li></ul><ul><li>Seen as precedent for future treaties </li></ul>
  32. 39. Kyoto Protocol Towards a Climate Change Regime
  33. 40. Kyoto Protocol <ul><li>Global agreement to address global warming; entered into force in 2005 </li></ul><ul><li>Commits countries to reducing emissions of 6 greenhouse gases (GHG) by at least 5% from 1990 levels during the 2008-2012 commitment period </li></ul><ul><li>Covers more than 160 countries globally and over 55% of GHG emissions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The United States and Australia have not ratified the Protocol </li></ul></ul>
  34. 41. Kyoto Protocol <ul><li>Three categories of signatories: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Annex I: All industrialized countries (OECD) and countries with economies in transition. These have legally binding obligations to reduce GHG emissions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Annex II: OECD countries only, with the obligation to: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>1) Provide financial and technical resources to developing countries </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>2) Transfer environmentally friendly technology to countries with economies in transition </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Non-Annex I: Developing and emerging countries </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Includes China and India, second largest emitters in the world </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Least Developed Countries with special consideration </li></ul></ul></ul>
  35. 42. Kyoto Protocol <ul><li>Three innovative flexibility mechanisms to lower the overall costs of achieving emissions targets: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Emissions Trading </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Joint Implementation (JI) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Mechanisms “shall be supplemental to domestic actions” (A rt. 6 ) </li></ul>
  36. 43. Joint Implementation (JI) <ul><li>An Annex I country may implement an emission reducing project or a project enhancing the removal by sinks of GHGs in another Annex I country </li></ul><ul><li>After meeting the eligibility requirements and receiving approval by the host country, the project may be counted towards Emission Reduction Units (ERUs), in compliance with the sponsor country reduction goal </li></ul><ul><li>ERUs can be traded </li></ul>
  37. 44. Clean Development Mechanism <ul><li>Allows Annex I countries to fund projects in non-Annex I countries, resulting in Certified Emission Reductions (CERs). (Art 12) </li></ul><ul><li>CERs can be traded </li></ul><ul><li>Was added upon insistence from developing countries to promote sustainable development </li></ul><ul><li>Aims are the dual objective of sustainable development in developing countries and cost-effective reductions in developed countries </li></ul><ul><li>Sets aside portion of proceeds to pay administrative costs and help developing countries with adaptation costs </li></ul>World Map of CDM Projects
  38. 45. Global Environmental Policy Lessons, Problems, and Prospects
  39. 46. International Environmental Treaties
  40. 47. Actors In Int’l Environmental Politics <ul><ul><li>Nation States </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>International Organizations (IOs / IGOs) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Multi-National Corporations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Environmental Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Scientific and Technical Bodies (Epistemic communities) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>People </li></ul></ul>
  41. 48. Obstacles to Cooperation <ul><li>Lowest-Common Denominator </li></ul><ul><li>Slow Development And Implementation </li></ul><ul><li>Large Numbers </li></ul><ul><li>Difficulty of Making Effective Treaties </li></ul><ul><li>High transaction costs </li></ul><ul><li>No pre-existing treaty creation, compliance or enforcement mechanisms </li></ul><ul><li>Scientific complexity </li></ul><ul><li>Issue linkages </li></ul><ul><li>Unequal adjustment costs </li></ul>
  42. 49. Fostering Cooperation <ul><li>Haas, Keohane and Levy argue that the process of creating and implementing effective international environmental policy requires the 3 C’s: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Concern </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Contractual Environment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Capacity </li></ul></ul>
  43. 50. New Environmental Policy Instruments (NEPIs): <ul><li>Non-regulatory tools of environmental policy </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1) Market based instruments (MBIs) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>instruments that affect estimates of costs of alternative actions open to economic agents </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>2) Voluntary agreements (VAs) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>agreements between industry and public authorities on the achievement of environmental objectives </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>3) Ecolabels </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>provide consumers with information about the environmental impact of products and services </li></ul></ul></ul>
  44. 51. Climate Change Ethics <ul><li>Who will pay? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Humanity today v. future generations </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Who is responsible? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Scientists </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Media </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Special interests </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Politicians </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Public </li></ul></ul>
  45. 52. Climate Change Policy <ul><li>A “good” policy should: </li></ul><ul><li>- address long time horizons and market dynamics </li></ul><ul><li>- reflect a shared understanding of long-term goals </li></ul><ul><li>- be flexible </li></ul><ul><li>- focus on mitigation and adaptation strategies </li></ul><ul><li>- distribute costs equitably </li></ul>
  46. 53. Global Environmental Governance <ul><li>Changes to the system: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased participation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>New Actors (NGOs, indigenous groups) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased privatization </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Business partnerships (WBCSD, Ceres) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Increased segmentation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Subnational, national, regional, and global policy </li></ul></ul></ul>