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Is Climate Policy Making Things Worse?

The fundamental climate change policy question today is not how much we should reduce carbon dioxide emissions by when, but what will currently proposed carbon dioxide emissions reductions do to our climate in the near-term? In addition, what are the ramifications of short-lived climate pollutants that are discounted by the traditional long-term 100-year climate policy time frame? Our current policy has changed little from the dawning of the Kyoto Protocol era. This era dates back to the Rio Earth Summit in 1992, and embodied the roots of current climate policy extending back to the first Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report (IPCC) in 1988. Currently proposed (June 2014) EPA regulations on carbon dioxide emissions reductions are only 13 percent more stringent than Kyoto’s goals and do not address short-lived climate pollutants or the short-term climate time frame. Since the inception of the Kyoto era, we have emitted as much carbon dioxide as was emitted in the prior 236 years. (2) This rapid increase in greenhouse gas emissions is not the only thing that has changed. The science has changed dramatically as well. What is important now is near-term increases in temperature from short-lived climate pollutants and the global cooling component of coal emissions. via PopularResistance.Org.

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