What is kyoto protocol?• The Kyoto Protocol is a protocol linked to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC or FCCC), aimed at fighting global warming.• The UNFCCC is an international environmental treaty with the goal of achieving the "stabilization of greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that would prevent dangerous anthropogenic interference with the climate system."
UNFCCC VS KYOTO PROTOCOL• The major distinction between the Protocol and the Convention is that while the Convention encouraged industrialised countries to stabilize GHG emissions, the Protocol commits them to do so.
background• The Kyoto Protocol was negotiated in Kyoto, Japan, in December 1997.• It was opened for signature on March 16, 1998, and closed a year later.• Ratifying countries had to represent at least 55 percent of the world’s total carbon dioxide emissions for 1990.• The first condition was met on May 23, 2002, when Iceland became the 55th country to ratify the Kyoto Protocol.
• When Russia ratified the agreement in November 2004, Kyoto Protocol entered into force on February 16, 2005.• As a U.S. presidential candidate, George W. Bush promised to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.• Shortly after he took office in 2001, however, President Bush withdrew U.S. support for the Kyoto Protocol and refused to submit it to Congress for ratification.
• As of April 2010, 191 states have signed and ratified the protocol.• Those states are : china maldives sri lanka malaysia poland new zealand south korea and many other countries
• Under the Protocol, 37 countries, the "Annex I countries" (Australia, Austria, Canada, Finland, Germany, United Kingdom, United States of America etc.) commit themselves to a reduction of four greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, sulphur hexafluoride) and two groups of gases (hydrofluorocarbons and perfluorocarbons) produced by them, and all member countries give general commitments.
• Annex I countries agreed to reduce their collective greenhouse gas emissions by 5.2% from the 1990 level (but note that, compared to the emissions levels that would be expected by 2010 without the Protocol, this target represents a 29% cut)• National targets range from 8% reductions for the European Union and some others to 7% for the US, 6% for Japan, 0% for Russia, and permitted increases of 8% for Australia and 10% for Iceland.
• Emission limits do not include emissions by international aviation and shipping, but are in addition to the industrial gases, chlorofluorocarbons.
• Since the goal of the Kyoto Protocol is to reduce worldwide greenhouse gas emissions, it sets specific emissions reduction targets for each industrialized nation, but excludes developing countries.• To meet their targets, most ratifying nations would have to combine several strategies: 1. place restrictions on their biggest polluters 2. manage transportation to slow or reduce emissions from automobiles 3. make better use of renewable energy sources—such as solar power, wind power, and biodiesel—in place of fossil fuels
Mechanisms under kyoto protocol• Flexible mechanisms, also sometimes knows as Flexibility Mechanisms or Kyoto Mechanisms, refers to Emissions Trading, the Clean Development Mechanism and Joint Implementation.• These are mechanisms defined under the Kyoto Protocol intended to lower the overall costs of achieving its emissions targets.
• These mechanisms enable parties to achieve emission reductions or to remove carbon from the atmosphere cost-effectively in other countries.• While the cost of limiting emissions varies considerably from region to region, the benefit for the atmosphere is in principle the same, wherever the action is taken.
• The Emissions Trading-mechanism allows parties to the Kyoto-protocol to buy greenhouse gas emission permits from other countries to help meet their domestic emission reduction targets.• Through the Joint Implementation, industrialised countries with a greenhouse gas reduction commitment of Annex 1 countries may fund emission reducing projects in other industrialised countries as an alternative to emission reductions in their own countries.
• The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) is an arrangement under the Kyoto Protocol allowing industrialised countries with a greenhouse gas reduction commitment of Annex 1 countries to invest in projects that reduce emissions in developing countries.• The CDM allows net global greenhouse gas emissions to be reduced at a much lower global cost by financing emissions reduction projects in developing countries where costs are lower than in industrialised countries.
Current status?• Most of the world’s industrialized nations support the Kyoto Protocol.• Australia also declined in the emissions of those gases.• One notable exception is the United States, which releases more greenhouse gases than any other nation and accounts for more than 25 percent of those generated by humans worldwide.
Kyoto protocol and malaysia• As a developing country, Malaysia has no quantitative commitments under the Kyoto Protocol at present.• However, together with all other countries, Malaysia is already committed under the UNFCCC to formulate, implement, publish and regularly update national and, where appropriate, regional programmes containing measures to mitigate climate change by addressing anthropogenic emissions by sources and removals by sinks of all greenhouse gases.
OUR EFFORT?• More Malaysian companies get Kyoto Protocol certification (2007) Malaysia, which is committed to the Kyoto Protocol under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), is expected to see more Malaysian companies obtaining greenhouse emissions certification, over the next two years.
• Carbon Management Consulting Group, an international consultant on greenhouse gases and global warming said an estimated 1,500 Malaysian companies are expected to be certified in the two years, based on the number of projects to be presented to the UN for validation approval.• Malaysia, to-date has 12 out of the total 489 projects registered with the UNFCCC, which is the largest on a per capita basis. The majority of these projects are involved in the use of palm biomass and these companies can market such technology to potential projects in countries such as Indonesia, Vietnam or Thailand.