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This is a pretty bogus editorial, that's for sure. There is one accurate point buried in it, though, which is that the Kyoto treaty is a meaningless political statement. Why are we reduced to statements like this? Because NO POLITICIAN IS GOING TO PROPOSE A REAL SOLUTION.

The U.S. rejected the Kyoto treaty (97 senators voted against ratification (none in favor)--not just the evil Republicans). European countries are struggling to meet the requirements, or backing out. And even if Kyoto were enacted by every country and then actually implemented by every country, it would not make any difference to the problem because it is such a small step. This is not a "Bush" problem, it's a "Western Civilization" problem.

The problem of global warming is huge. The economic disruption that would be require to reverse it is huge. Most people simply don't understand the scale of the problem: One estimate is that we would need to cut CO2 emissions by 70% to negate the problem.
http://clima.casaccia.enea.it/ipcc/focalpoint/infoclima/2001/Long_term_perspectives.html

SEVENTY PERCENT REDUCTION. That is a HUGE amount. Basically it says that everybody needs to cut their use of energy to 1/4 of what it is now. How are you going to do that? It's so completely impractical that getting the political will to do it is simply NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. It would essentially require the replacement of the entire Western electricity generating system with nuclear power, and the replacement of the entire automobile transportation system with electric trains.

Realistically, what politician is going to take that on as a platform? It's not going to happen. What is going to happen is a bunch of handwringing and a lot of flooding of low-lying areas. Move to high ground!

by asdf on Mon Jun 27th, 2005 at 11:10:37 AM EST

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