This China View article gives a simple, compelling argument for why the developed world should, in the short term, carry the lion’s share of the responsibility for climate change: first, we created the lion’s share of the problem; and second, we have the capacity to do so while letting the developing world pull their populations out of poverty.
It also includes what, for me, was an interesting statistic. The all-time high for greenhouse gas production from industrialized countries occurred way back in 1990, at 18.7 billion tonnes. As of 2005, the second-highest year, we were emitting at an annual rate of 18.2 billion tonnes. That is compelling evidence that while some laggards (Canada) were snivelling about how impossible it would be to address this problem, everybody else seems to have been getting on with the job. While Canada’s emissions went UP more than 30 per cent in that period, the rest of the developed world has held the line.
Imagine how well we could be doing if we were ALL actually trying.