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The G-8 Countries Climate Agreement: A Lot for A Little

By Chip Knappenberger -- July 15, 2009

At the G8 summit held in L’Aquila Italy last week, the G8 nations came up with a climate master plan aimed at keeping the total rise in global temperatures (above pre-industrial conditions) at a value of 2ºC or less. A cursory reading of the plan makes it seem as if the G8 nation’s are reaching out to the rest of world by agreeing to take on the harshest emissions cuts themselves, leaving the world’s developing nations with only a bit of mop-up duty in order to make all the final numbers work out. The opposite is true.

A close look at how the plan must actually work reveals a great semantics play by the G8. They know that they alone do not hold the power to substantially alter the projected course of future global warming through their emissions reductions.…