Bonn Voyage: Kyoto's Uncertain Revival

While the Bonn Conference revived an ailing global warming agreement, Kyoto's flaws render it a questionable approach to the longest of long-term politics.

Issue: Fall 2001

Reports of Kyoto's death seem to have been exaggerated. Just when
most observers were writing Kyoto's obituary, the international
community reached a breakthrough in Bonn, resolving many of the key
political issues and thereby breathing new life into the Kyoto
process. But although Kyoto has shown surprising resilience, it is
hardly a done deal. Much work remains before it enters into force,
let alone before it can be considered a success. Moreover, despite
the events in Bonn, the United States does not appear likely to join
Kyoto anytime soon. This means that even if Kyoto does go forward, it
will apply to only about a quarter of the world's emissions of
greenhouse gases, with no near-term prospect for expanding its
coverage.

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