As indicated by many scientists,( what is the authority for this, which scientists, book or journal article) the reduction of greenhouse gas emission requires a global consolidated effort with participation from all the countries across the globe. At least, those countries responsible for emitting the maximum amount of greenhouse gas are expected to comply with the cause. The current environment regime as governed by Kyoto Protocol is not helping in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. In fact, Kyoto Protocol, due to differentiating between developed and developing countries, has come under heated criticism from all corners. Common but Differentiated Responsibilities (CBDR) approach provides guidance to all the countries to work towards a common goal but differentiates between the developing and developed countries in terms of environmental criterion. This essay will discuss the Common but Differentiated Approach and its various aspects in conjunction with the Kyoto climate change protocols, further emphasizing how the law is difficult to implement and what could be a better approach to solve the problem. Please just use the question asked, I don’t understand what you are trying to say here, the English is also wrong.
What is Common but Differentiated Responsibilities (CBDR)?
The concept of Common but Differentiated Responsibility evolved from the basic understanding of the common heritage of mankind. The general principles of equity also have a huge influence on the formulation of Common but Differentiated Responsibilities framework. There are three major parts to this principle:
The first part deals with the Common Responsibilities of all states. The concept of common resources and responsibilities came from the common heritage of mankind and common concern. This part describes the obligations to be shared among two or more states for the protection of a particular goal; in most of the cases for the protection of an environmental resource. When the environmental resource is shared among nations then the concept of common responsibility is applied. For example, air shared between nations is beyond the control of any one nation. Hence the protection of air from greenhouse gas pollution is a common responsibility shared by all the nations (Bekker 1997).
Other two parts of the principle deal with differentiated responsibilities. One of the steps of differentiated responsibility is to determine how to differentiate. (What do you mean by determine how to differentiate. Differentiate what???) Common but Differentiated Responsibility takes into account the historic data for pollution to come up with differentiated responsibility. For example, most of the industrialized and developed nations have been emitting greenhouse gas for more than few centuries. They have caused much more pollution of the air than that of the developing countries. Most of the underdeveloped countries may not have done much damage to the air in terms of greenhouse gas emission. Historical data is the cornerstone for arriving at the differentiated responsibility. That is why all the developed nations are more responsible and have stricter targets than that of the developing nations.
Finally, once the differentiated responsibility framework is established, the Common but Differentiated responsibility protocol( What CBDR FRAMEWORK AND PROTOCOL ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT??) evaluates the capability of each nation to implement the useful measures to achieve the common responsibility. For example, India and Nigeria both are identified as having the same level of differentiated responsibility. Then ideally both should have the same level of greenhouse gas reduction target. However, that is not always the case. If India is in a better economic state than Nigeria, then Nigeria may have more relaxed targets than that of India. Differential responsibility tries to achieve substantive equality between developed and developing nations. Trying to achieve a mere formal equality may seriously hamper the growth prospects of developing or underdeveloped countries. The argument is that if a simple equality model is employed, it will give undue advantage to the developing countries. Therefore, the legal obligations of differential responsibility for different states are different.
The Climate Change and Its Effects
Global temperatures were recorded in most of countries of the world starting in the second half of the 19th century and whatever temperatures were recorded in last 100 years shows that the average surface temperature of the earth have gone up by 0.74±0.18 °C between the period 1906 to 2005. However, the temperature rise was much severe during the second half of the 20th century than the first half. Furthermore, we have seen and heard many other evidences across the world. The widespread melting of the arctic ice, rise in sea level, increased temperature of the oceans and early spring phenomenon like flowering of the plants are surely indirect indications of global warming. The major reason for global warming is an increase in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Water Vapor, CO2, Methane, CO, and Ozone are the main greenhouse gases found in the natural atmosphere. With the normal percentage of those gases in the air, the earth tries to maintain an average temperature of around 59°F. However, an increase in the percentage of greenhouse gases contributes to the retention of more heat in the atmosphere resulting in warming of the planet.
The IPCC Report: AR1
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) presented its first report in 1990. It served as the basis for the creation of United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The IPCC report of 1990 contained three sections. It first did a scientific assessment of climate changes. Then the report highlighted the impact of climate change and finally provided recommendation for some broad level response strategies. The main theme of the report was based on the reduction of greenhouse gas emission.
UNFCCC and CBDR
UNFCCC was formed on the basis of the recommendations made by IPCC and it was formally introduced to the participating nations during the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. The main agenda discussed in the Earth Summit was to reduce and stabilize the greenhouse gas at a lower level. The percentage of greenhouse gas in the atmosphere should not increase to a dangerous level(Drop or increase?). After long discussions, the updated UNFCCC was opened for signature in late 1992. All the strategies and clauses discussed for the reduction of greenhouse gases in the UNFCCC was not binding to the signatories. Between 1992 and 2011, 195 countries have signed. UNFCCC, in 1992, started a series of discussions on CBDR in climate change meetings. UNFCCC draft of 1992 was the first step towards CBDR. The idea was to bring all the nations on a common platform for solving the issue of global warming. CBDR was already in discussion in other areas where the issues involved multiple parties. In the case of climate change, all nations were affected by the global warming. UNFCCC created a convention which highlighted this common concern asking all the nations to take responsibility.(UN General Assembly created a convention, not a draft) In other words, UNFCCC was trying to create a CBDR framework to address the issue. Though a common responsibility to protect the environment from the greenhouse gas emission was identified but differentiated responsibility was not discussed in the Rio convention.( This is not right, Article 3 of the UNFCCC adopts CBDR) All the nations were told to look into the strategies to reduce the greenhouse gas emission and take appropriate actions. However, none of those proposed actions were binding. IPCC report in 1995 created a lot of controversy. Many scientists said that the statistics shown in the IPCC report of 1995 was politically motivated and far from the actual condition of the environment. The report also said that the strategies, proposed as part of UNFCCC in 1992, were not being implemented effectively. There was no evidence of greenhouse gas reduction or stabilization as per the report.
Kyoto Protocol and CBDR
After the IPCC report of 1995, all the members of the UNFCCC started the process of holding annual meeting from that year onwards. In the Conference of Parties (COP) meeting in 1995, it was decided that the nations under UNFCCC should take positive binding actions to reduce the greenhouse gases. However, what should be the responsibilities of each nation and what should be the basis of differentiation were not agreed upon. All Annex I parties (developed nations) of UNFCCC then participated in the first Kyoto commitment period. During this period, it was agreed upon by the UNFCCC members to use CBDR method to come up with differentiated responsibilities. The differentiated responsibilities were determined on the basis of the history of greenhouse gas emission. Based on that, binding targets were set in the Kyoto Protocol for Australia, Japan, Russia, New Zealand, and EU union, Belarus, Croatia, Iceland, Kazakhstan, Norway, Switzerland and Ukraine. These countries agreed to achieve the first round of targets for greenhouse gas reduction. Furthermore, it was decided in the Kyoto Protocol that all other countries also should try to reduce the greenhouse gas emission in accordance with global strategy and targets. However, the targets were not binding on them.
Mechanisms formed in Kyoto Protocol
A Joint Implementation is formulated in the Kyoto Protocol. The protocol allows a country, which has a binding emission reduction target under the Kyoto Protocol, to earn emission reduction units from greenhouse gas reduction projects from another country, which also has binding target under the same protocol. The Joint Implementation offers the participating nations a more flexible and cost efficient way to fulfill the target in accordance with the mandates of the Kyoto protocol. Thus, the host country benefits from the foreign investment and the technical knowledge transfer.
Another important aspect of differentiated responsibility is the emission trading framework. The emission trading framework allows the countries, which have exceeded their greenhouse gas reduction targets, to sell excess carbon credits to other countries, which are struggling to meet their own targets. The carbon reduction is tracked and then traded in the carbon market.
Developing countries, as per the CBDR and the Kyoto Protocol, do not have binding targets for greenhouse gas emissions. A clean development mechanism allows the developing countries to run emission reduction projects and earn carbon credits for each ton of reduction in CO2. These carbon reduction points can then be traded and sold to the developed countries to meet part of their binding targets. This mechanism helps the developed countries meet their targets. The idea behind this mechanism was to create an environment of sustainable growth in developing countries. There is really no depth to these explanations of the 3 mechanisms you mentioned and the footnote referencing is very wrong, what is UNFCCC hash tag 1, 2, 3. There is absolutely nothing like that. Please if you do not have an idea of the topic, you should not have taken it.
Post Kyoto Climate Change Negotiations
After the Kyoto Protocol, climate change related negotiations and trading have seen huge political influences. IPCC-3 and IPCC-4 have also indicated that the effectiveness of the CBDR was diminishing due to the complex political environment. In Bali action plan in 2007, all the developed countries agreed to quantify their targets and revise their emission reduction objectives. The developing countries have submitted nationally appropriate mitigation actions (NAMA’s) which are quantifiable, reportable and verifiable. However, the developing countries and African nations continued to enjoy non-binding targets. At Copenhagen negotiations in 2009, many countries indicated that the global warming (Wrong) should be limited to below 3.6 degree F for the next five years, and then that can be reduced to 2.4 degree F from 2015 onwards. This is known as the Copenhagen Accord. 114 countries agreed to the accord by committing to achieve the levels. However, many countries were still unwilling to accept the binding targets. In fact, many developed Annex I countries refused to take any more binding targets. Countries like Russia, New Zealand and Canada did not renew their targets after the first Kyoto Commitment was over. Copenhagen Accord also created the base for changes in UNFCCC as part of the Cancun agreements. COP adopted Cancun agreements in 2010. 17 developed nations complied with Cancun agreements. The developing nations stated that they have noted the targets but would require international help to achieve those targets. In 2011, Durban and in 2012, Doha conventions called for enhanced action. IPCC reports showed that even after most of the developed nations achieved their targets, the greenhouse gas emission was nowhere near to the overall target level. Both the conventions noted 'with grave concern' that the current actions were not adequate. In the developing countries, poverty eradication, food and shelter, clean water access and education for all are of primary importance. Low emission of greenhouse gas often is not counted in the primary agenda for the developing nations. However, a substantial greenhouse gas is not emitted from the developing countries. Excluding them from the binding targets is not helping in achieving the targets. ( I would like a bit more discussions and depth in the Post Kyoto negotiations, its not explanatory at all)
What are the Changes Required?
The main problem with CBDR approach is that the differentiation between the developed and developing countries is made on the basis of historical emissions of greenhouse gases. Almost no emphasis is given to the current state of affairs . Developing nations may have emitted very less greenhouse gas in the past but that is not the case anymore. China was not a very big contributor to greenhouse gases till 1990. However, in the last two decades, it has emerged as the largest greenhouse gas contributor in the whole world surpassing even the contribution of the United States. Ironically, the CBDR and UNFCCC still does not recognize the need for China to follow stringent greenhouse gas reduction targets. It is absolutely necessary by the United Nations to re-evaluate the definition of developed and developing nations. With better category definition of countries and targets, the overall involvement of the countries will improve. A new category for India, China, Indonesia, Brazil, Russia and Mexico will make sure that the major greenhouse gas contributors are responsible for their carbon emission. They may have a less stringent target than developed nations but their commitments should increase over time to attain the levels of the developed nations in coming days.
The problem with such approach is how to convince the developing countries to join the environmental bandwagon. It is definitely not easy with the United Nations not being able to force any law to any country. There are few ways through which the United Nations can convince the high greenhouse gas emitting nations to come under the binding commitment clause. Degradation of health of the local population and increase in the mortality rate can be cited as the first reason by the United Nations to the high greenhouse gas emitting nations to come under binding targets. This probably will help them understand the problem at hand better. Furthermore, from a political point of view, those nations can influence other nations and voice their opinion in the international stage if they choose to participate in the CBDR greenhouse gas binding clause. Finally, if those countries face resistance from internal and external sources, then they probably will be willing to join the CBDR. United Nations can approach the developed nations to create some pressure on the developing nations to conform to environmental standards while doing business with them in the government as well as private sector.
Climate change is a complex problem. It is not a local or regional problem. This problem requires international cooperation for effective solution. In last few decades based on the scientific evidences the problem of air pollution came to limelight. After years of deliberation, finally, the nations across the world agreed that greenhouse gas is a threat to all the nations. A common cause of concern was established during the Kyoto Protocol. During that time CBDR also came into picture and it assigned differentiated responsibilities based on the status of developed and developing nation to maintain an equitable distribution among all the participating countries. However, over the last 15 years that solution seems not to be working effectively. The ultimate solution to the climate change remains elusive as of now. The Common but Differentiated Responsibility framework is definitely equitable but ineffective. The broad definitions, less accountability and static definitions have created confusion and discontent among the participating nations. However, there is hope. There are ways with which the nations contributing significantly to greenhouse gas emission can be persuaded to come under the binding targets for greenhouse gas emission. This way the fight against climate change, using the CBDR methodology, will at least start rolling.
I sincerely do not think you read the Bodansky, Haris, and Brendich articles I sent. This is not a criticial evaluation, there is basically no depth. Please do the work and give me the critical evaluation that I need, I appreciate your efforts but I definitely can do better than this. I will not accept the work if it is not what I want, im sorry. Your footnote citations are really bad, please write them properly and please, you do not use references in the source that you have not citated in the footnote. You definitely have to put an authority for every fact,reason or argument you make you state. Please revise the Paper.
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