carbon emissions

Far Out, by Flare

The historic Paris Agreement is being undercut by the Volkswagen emissions scandal.

As the world gathers in Lima to discuss next year's climate deadline, a lot of focus is on the US-China climate agreement. While alone that deal has not paved a pathway for a meaningful global agreement all the way to Paris, if you detour through New Delhi something intriguing and hopeful emerges.

As long as nation-states have distinctly different levels of energy-dependent economic development, and their self-interests are so varied, there is really no basis for the mutuality of interest required for a meaningful treaty. 

Advocates for action on climate change have long urged the United States to make the first major move in limiting carbon dioxide emissions, with the hope that other big emitters around the world would follow suit. That seems to actually be happening now: only days after the United States announced a new rule that will cut emissions from power plants by 30 percent by 2030, China made some noise about instituting a carbon cap of its own.

President Barack Obama is set to take his boldest step to halt the rise of the oceans and stop the warming of the planet. It won’t be enough unless the rest of the world follows. Trimming carbon emissions from U.S. power plants by 25 percent in coming decades, as Obama is said to be proposing, would be more than overwhelmed by increases in China andIndia where coal-fired power plants are springing up and new cars are rolling out of showrooms.