In the midst of the recent climate pledging lovefest, it's easy to lose sight of the unhappy truth that atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases have already reached levels that effectively guarantee us at least several decades of global warming. While the Kyoto Protocol is worthwhile--to reduce global emissions by 5.2 percent below 1990 levels--it is only a small first step toward putting brakes on climate change. To do that, scientists estimate that worldwide emissions must be reduced by at least 60 to 70 percent. Needless to say, achieving those levels of reductions will be a something of a challenge. …
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Eric de Place is a senior researcher at Sightline Institute, a Seattle-based sustainability think tank, working on promoting smart policy decisions for the Pacific Northwest. Visit http://daily.sightline.org/blog/ to read more on Sightline's blog.
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