The US administration could be forced to follow Kyoto recommendations now that 10 US states have taken their own measures to cut greenhouse gas emissions, says US economist.
The US administration could be forced to follow Kyoto recommendations now that 10 US states have taken their own measures to cut greenhouse gas emissions, says a leading US economist.
The 10 states, including California and New Hampshire, represent 24 per cent of the US population and 27 per cent of the US economy. They are committed to climate change policies similar in scope to the Kyoto protocol, and other states are set to follow, said Brendan Fisher at the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics, University of Vermont, US.
Fisher, writing in the journal Nature, identified three further states that will probably adopt Kyoto-level emissions cuts, and 25 municipalities that might adopt the targets.
But none of these measures is legally enforceable until the US joins the Kyoto agreement. ’It absolutely matters that on the federal level the US has not joined the rest of the world,’ said Fisher, who hopes this sub-national movement will affect a federal stance.
The sub-national actions are applauded by Brenda Boardman at the University of Oxford’s Environmental Change Institute. ’Any grass roots action like this is to be recommended and welcomed,’ said Boardman. ’This is change happening by default, independent of national policy.’ Katharine Sanderson
B Fisher and R Costanza, Nature, 2005, 438, 301