Global Warming: More Action, Less Hot Air

Congress and states address global warming, as well as reasons against barrel burning.


| June/July 2005



Greenhouse Gases

Lawmakers are finally taking a serious look at the effects of global warming.


Photo courtesy MOTHER EARTH NEWS

Congress, states address global warming.

The Kyoto treaty to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is helping draw attention to the problem of global warming, and efforts already are under way to address the issue in Congress and in many states despite the Bush administration’s inaction.

Although the United States is responsible for about 24 percent of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions, it is one of only four industrialized nations that did not sign the treaty. The others are Australia, Croatia and Monaco.

The Kyoto Protocol went into effect on Feb. 16, marking a major step in the worldwide effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, such as carbon dioxide and methane, which experts agree are contributing to global climate change. With the treaty in effect, 35 industrialized countries are now committed to reducing their greenhouse gas emissions by 2012.

A week before the Kyoto Protocol went into effect, Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Sen. Joe Lieberman, D-Conn., reintroduced the Climate Stewardship Act, a plan to limit greenhouse gas emissions from industry, electricity generation and automobiles, by creating an emissions trading program.

“The evidence is clear that the problem is here, and that’s why we have to do something about it,” Lieberman said when introducing the bill. “Doing nothing is no longer an option.” Lieberman and McCain will hold public meetings across the country to raise awareness about the problem of climate change, according to Lieberman’s office.





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