Bibliography

Adams, John (1995), Risk, London UCL Press. Agarwal A. and S. Narain (1991), Global Warming in an Unequal World, New Delhi Centre for Science and Environment. Albin, Cecilia (1995), 'Rethinking justice and fairness the case of acid rain emission reductions', Review of International Studies 21 119-43. Ambio (1994), 'Integrating earth systems', 23 (1) (Special Issue). Anderson, Kym (1995), 'The political economy of coal subsidies in Europe', Energy Policy 23 485-96. -and Warwick J. McKibbin...

Case Study The Moral Discourse After Kyoto

We illustrate these points by means of a brief case study of the moral discourse employed by CAN after Kyoto while details were being negotiated, in its newsletter, Eco. Eco is a newsletter produced by NGOs at international negotiating meetings since the 1972 Stockholm conference. For climate change negotiations it is the work of the Climate Action Network, a loose grouping of NGOs active on the climate issue, and it is circulated on a daily basis to delegates to meetings. It thus not only...

Norms And Interests Ngos As Moral Agents

NGOs seek to perform significant roles in international politics as moral agents (Keck and Sikkink, 1998), often acting across national borders in what Kathryn Sikkink (1993) termed 'principled issue networks'. We are sceptical of whether such activity is often capable of 'trumping' interests and are concerned about the political implications of such universalist claims. Rather, we suggest that norms-based campaigns can advantage one set of interests relative to others instead of simply failing...

Civil Society And Its Representatives

Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that see themselves as the principal agents dispensing this international morality do not restrict themselves to human rights or development assistance, but almost routinely include global environmental protection as well. Claiming to represent ordinary people in 'civil society' they thus stake a claim to be acting outside and beyond the world of states, though often they act and are sought as tacit allies, or even partners, by governments, or sections of...

The failure of principled discourse

In 1991 there was conflict between experts at the US-based World Resources Institute (WRI) and non-Western scientists at India's Centre for Science and Environment (CSE). WRI research focused on current GHG emissions, which, if they were to be cut, would place a higher burden on developing countries than would have been the case with a ranking based on cumulative emissions over a longer time. The burdens would have been different again if calculated as per unit area or per capita, or even per...

Notes

We have relied for this account on two major sources, unless otherwise indicated. First, the Earth Negotiations Bulletin, published by the International Institute for Sustainable Development, and widely regarded as an authoritative and balanced account of events. It is published on a daily basis during negotiation meetings, with a summary at the conclusion of these sessions. Second, we have relied upon the excellent analysis of the key negotiating issues produced just before Kyoto by the...

Conclusion The Failure Of The Kyoto Process

The Kyoto process consisted of a formula which had been employed successfully with other MEAs an emphasis on science and strong moral arguments to ensure that interdependency norms prevailed over sovereignty norms the use of 'iterative functionalism', or vague non-binding agreements in the FCCC which were then to be tightened and made more specific. Whereas this process worked with ozone, for example, it resulted in failure or at best a partial rescue with climate change. This raises the...

From Cop To

At the end of the day, Kyoto resembled a trade negotiation, right down to the nomination of targets by Annex I parties, the USA running a series of bilaterals in a GATT-like 'Green Room', the assumption on the part of parties that surveillance would be attempted to discover negotiating positions - right down to the thirteenth-hour conclusion when agreement was reached in a state of exhaustion. But it left unspecified significant details that would need to be enunciated if the achievements at...

The Berlin Mandate

The FCCC, like many MEAs, made provision for several matters to be decided on an on-going basis by meetings of the Conference of the Parties (COP) - a clear example of iterative functionalism. The first meeting (COP-1) was held in Berlin in March-April 1995. While the meeting adopted rules of procedure and established subsidiary bodies, one important task was to review the adequacy of the FCCC mitigation commitments in Articles 4.2 (a) and (b). A standing invitation was thus provided for...

Fccc A Statement Of Principles

In June 1992, 155 countries attending the UN Conference on Environment and Development (or 'Earth Summit') in Rio de Janeiro signed the Framework Convention on Climate Change (FCCC). A further 10 nations signed by the time the treaty was closed for signature in June 1993, and the fiftieth ratification was received in December 1993, triggering its entry into force on 21 March 1994. Ratification of this framework convention has no effect on the Kyoto Protocol, which has yet (at the time of...

The Kyoto process

In June 1988 Canada sponsored an international conference on 'The Changing Atmosphere Implications for Global Security'. This was attended by 340 people from 46 countries, including two heads of state and more than 100 government officials, but it was not an officially sanctioned intergovernmental conference and government participants attended only in their personal capacities. Also attending were many scientists, industry representatives and environmentalists. Despite having no official...

Conclusion Interests And The Kyoto Process

For all the high moral tone evident in the pronouncements of participants in climate change negotiations, these are the inescapable realities of the underlying interests. There were two orders of magnitude differences in the perceived costs of compliance between European and non-European Annex I parties in the way in which Kyoto would impact upon their interests, thanks to the mixes of fuel sources and costs which comprised the national interest of each. The Europeans had (very) expensive coal,...

Technology And Economic Change

Climate change policy has boosted the renewables industry substantially, largely with the help of public funds or 'incentives', and will continue to do so. But the big winners have been, and will continue to be, hydro and gas compared with coal, and nuclear compared with all others, especially because it emits no GHGs and (unlike hydro) is not restricted by the availability of suitable sites while uranium ore is plentiful and nuclear fuel can be recycled or even produced from weapons-grade...

Energy Or Carbon Taxes

Under the SDP-Green Coalition government, Germany has introduced an 'ecology tax' which will currently run until 2003 the Greens want the government to commit to extending it, a move Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder has resisted. While the multibillion dollar revenues have been hypothecated to support the failing pension scheme, the tax is highly unpopular, with polls showing around 80 per cent of Germans opposed to it (Reuters, 6 March 2001). While Kyoto provides an external justification for the...

Energy Efficiency And Renewables

While the positive benefits of climate policy for the nuclear industry are perhaps the most stark, largely because opposition to that energy source has in the past been the most vehement, the climate change issue has created other winners, and it has been especially useful where political opposition to siting facilities has been important, including opposition to renewable energy forms such as hydroelectricity. For example, the Canadian Hydropower Association, in a press release on 19 February...

Recent Nuclear Politics In Europe

It has become questionable whether even Germany, which once claimed for itself the role of environmental vanguard on the climate change issue, had any realistic hope of meeting its target, despite massive subsidies to alternative energy technologies and the imposition of unpopular 'eco-taxes'. The government of Helmut Kohl had set for Germany a target of a reduction of 40 per cent by 2020, but (as we shall see) that was set with the political goal in mind of building support for nuclear energy....

The Failure Of The Kyoto Process

The Bush Administration's decision to withdraw from the Kyoto process was a triumph of interests over the green ambition of Kyoto. US withdrawal will, however, by lowering the demand for carbon credits, reduce the likely inflow of investment funds to industrializing countries, as a result of the constraints of binding targets and the relative cheapness of emission reduction in some countries, and reduce the expectations of carbon traders and carbon consultants. Clearly, the only nations...

Energy interests opportunities and uneven burdensharing

In order to understand why the Kyoto process ran into the sand it is necessary to consider critically what was at stake how various interests were impacted by the Protocol, what Kyoto sought to achieve, and what the chances were of achieving the commitments contained within it. Kyoto, if ratified, will make very little difference to future accumulation of GHGs and thus the possibility of anthropogenic climate change. However, it is meant to be only a first step, and the need for the other steps...

Conclusion

While the processes by which MEAs are developed and perhaps eventually implemented could be specified in multi-stage process models derived from the public policy literature, it seems that we can account for the outcomes widely considered to be disappointing, at least to environmentalists and some bureaucracies, with a simpler model, warning, however, that it might require reinterpretation and adjustment for specific cases. With this model, we propose that by means of reducing environmental...

Use Of Climate Change Models Manufacturing Consensus

These snapshots of the IPCC at work provide insights into how it systematically constructs the available science so as to downplay uncertainty, accentuate human causality, magnify the likely warming and depict it as harmful in its consequences. These are only brief vignettes, but we hold that they are typical and that they have important consequences. They raise the fundamental question as to why this has happened. Have the green beliefs of the authors and drafters themselves biased research,...

Impacts The Malaria Myth

The IPCC assessment reports have not only sought to play down the uncertainties surrounding climate science and to prefer data which appear to maximize rates of warming, they have also emphasized the negative impacts of any likely future warming. A slightly warmer world with higher levels of atmospheric CO2 is not universally regarded in necessarily negative terms. A slight warming might enhance agricultural productivity, as would elevated levels of CO2, because plants pho-tosynthesize CO2 to...

The Hockey Stick And Manic

One important feature of the TAR was the claim that the 1990s was likely to have been the warmest decade of the millennium and 1998 the warmest year since records began. Previously, FAR and SAR statements about the high observed mean global temperatures in the late 1990s had been qualified with expressions such as the 'highest recorded temperature'. Since reasonably reliable records stretched back only a couple of centuries and 'global' records only for a little more than half a century, here...

Empirical Disputes How Much Warming

One of the key points of criticism of the IPCC consensus has been its acceptance of the 'surface record' pattern of warming since 1850. This record, against which the general circulation models (GCM) used by climate researchers are calibrated, shows a warming up only until about 1940, followed by a flat period, and then some recent warming. This pattern does not reflect emissions and for many critics rather 'points towards' chaos natural cyclical variations in the climate-ocean system, or even...

Basic Scientific Disputes The Attribution Controversy

The claim that observed and model predicted global warming could be attributed primarily or even largely to anthropogenic activity related to radiative forcing (that is, changes in the composition of the atmosphere brought about by the combustion of fossil fuels rather than by other natural or human phenomena) was perhaps the most important message coming out of the IPCC Second Assessment Report (SAR), 1995. It was certainly the most important in a diplomatic sense. It overshadowed, at least to...

Systemic Bias In The Ipcc

This linking of the IPCC to the FCCC created a strong pull on the kind of conclusions it was likely to produce and, because the IPCC exerts a similar pull on the conduct of climate science, in turn on the conduct of research. But there would seem to be a number of systemic factors which have also been a source of bias in the consensus produced by the IPCC. The problems with the IPCC go right to its foundations. As with most political issues with a high scientific content, a consensus emerges...

Institutionalising International Climate Research

The political mood for climate science opting for the warming over the cooling hypothesis was therefore most propitious in the mid-1980s. The time was ripe for a 'knowledge base' that would provide justifications for reducing the use of fossil fuels and increasing use of both nuclear and alternative energy and for supporting struggling energy conservation efforts. If the circumstances were propitious in several key industrial nations, this was also the case internationally provided the possible...

The Warming Threat Prevails

The WMO executive itself began to attract climate change research to its research portfolio by the late 1970s. Efforts to draw attention to the subject with reference to energy demand forecasting can also be traced to this period when American, Canadian, Swedish and British research groups began to collaborate on integrating energy forecasting and environmental futures.5 From then on, the more specific threat of global warming, rather than simply climatic change and above all the immediately...

Brief History Of Climate Change Research

Curiosity over the effects of anthropogenic emissions are almost as venerable as the Industrial Revolution which was marked by a shift from largely renewable energy sources to fossil fuels. The possibility that emissions of carbon dioxide might produce an enhanced greenhouse effect was first raised in 1827 by Joseph Fourier. In 1896 Svente Arrhenius predicted an increase in air temperature of between 4 and 6 C and in 1938 a British steam technologist, Guy Callendar, also concluded that the...

The Nature Of Science

There is a natural tension between an institution designed to yield a consensus on the basis of the latest scientific research (as was the IPCC) and the usual conception of science. Science is inherently both conservative and conflictual, and is a kind of game of 'last man standing' the explanation which has survived numerous attempts to falsify it and which has been supported by numerous subsequent studies is to be preferred to that which is based upon a single study. Conflicts between...

Baptists And Bootleggers

The marriage of principled and causal discourses would therefore appear to be problematic. It remains highly unlikely that science can be of much assistance to those wishing to progress purely principled arguments, because science is not a reliable ally for it may (indeed, should) always change its mind with new evidence. While the relationships between science and interests and that between morals and science are of significance, it is that between morality and interests which is of perhaps...

Environmentalism As Moral Crusade

It was not just that an attack on a particular means constituted the end for the CAN, but that any suggestion that parties should be able to 'buy their way out' should be morally condemned. The objection here was, as philosopher Robert Goodin (1992,102-3) has pointed out, to the very notion of 'buying' a right to pollute. We often forget that the notion of 'pollution' is first and foremost a moral or at least judgemental category. We were reminded of this by the anthropologist Mary Douglas...

Model Of The International Environmental Policy Process

The international policy process does not end with the signing of an international agreement and neither can its implementation be reduced to a matter of 'ratification' or even 'compliance'. As Hanf and Underdal (1998, 150) note, 'The implementation game has more often than not been neglected in studies of international cooperation, or analyzed only in terms of factors encouraging or curbing defections from the agreements entered into.' Hanf and Underdal base their analysis on two fundamental...

The Formation Of The Ipcc

The IPCC was set up jointly by WMO and a very youthful and poorly endowed UNEP and was repeatedly called upon by the UN General Assembly to provide 'scientific' advice (Churchill and Freestone, 1992). The Panel was now dominated by scientists from government scientific research institutions using the good offices and machinery of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) to reach the heart of governments via meteorological offices and eagerly assisted by environmental bureaucracies engaged in...

Us Withdrawal And Cop Part Ii

Bush first announced on 13 March 2001 that he would back away from requiring domestic regulation of CO2 emissions from power plants, on the grounds that CO2 was not a pollutant under the Clean Air Act. In a letter to Senators Hagel, Helms, Craig and Roberts on 15 March, he stated that he opposed the Kyoto protocol because it exempted '80 per cent of the world, including major population centres such as China and India, from compliance and would cause serious harm to the US economy'. He also...

Preface

It is one of the distinguishing features of the scientific debate over climate change that those who contest the prevailing orthodoxy of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are often called 'sceptics', and this is meant to be a pejorative term. Scepticism, however, has long been central to the scientific endeavour. We have written this book out of a commitment to scepticism. We are sceptical for two reasons after decades of observing environmental policy and politics, we are...

The External Use Of Ipcc Reports

The writing of the individual chapters and Policy-makers' Summaries of IPCC assessment reports may have received critical attention from insiders, but from a policy perspective the next stage is even more important that is the use of the IPCC reports by 'stakeholders' - its own spokesmen, the media, NGOs, politicians, public servants and other political actors. What is apparent here and cannot but be known to 'science' is that these actors, especially dedicated bureaucracies and NGOs - be they...

The Kyoto Protocol

The Berlin Mandate led to the conclusion of a Protocol to the FCCC at the Third Conference of the Parties in Kyoto in late 1997. FCCC Executive Secretary Michael Zammit Cutajar, at the opening plenary session of COP-3 in Kyoto, drew on what he saw as the consensus-generating power of both science and normative arguments in urging agreement, simultaneously denigrating interests which might stand in the way. In using what the UNFCCC secretariat saw as the drivers of the Kyoto process, he...

The suppression of scientific controversy

In this chapter we examine the ways in which climate change science has been selectively interpreted by the IPCC itself and even more so by its many 'users' environmental bureaucracies, NGOs and the media in particular, to promote consensus in favour of a particular policy direction. Here we focus on NGOs and the media as external users of IPCC advice, but provide some evidence that IPCC spokesmen acceded to what we consider to be unwarranted alarmism on the part of these actors. We consider...

The Fossil Fuel Sector And Energy Security

Nuclear and hydro aside, climate change creates winners and losers within the fossil fuel sector - a point often overlooked. Gas is advantaged in relation to black coal, as is oil, and black coal in relation to brown coal (or lignite). Various fossil fuels have a differing carbon content, and so switching to a lower carbon fuel -where possible - is in most circumstances the most painless way of achieving substantial reductions in the emission of CO2. Such switching is least likely, at this...

Science Norms And The Kyoto Process

The equivalent international agreement developed in response to the threat of climate change - the Kyoto Protocol - necessarily saw national interests figure much more prominently during negotiations than had been the case at Montreal, with science proving much less effective in producing consensus. With climate change, the proposed emission reductions have far more serious and pervasive and unpredictable effects on energy supplies and fuel competition than substitution for CFCs, which were...

Problems With Multilateral Environmental Agreements

Previously, the major concern over MEAs was that they were doomed to move at the speed of the slowest boat and be formulated according to the lowest common denominator Sand, 1990 . This causes many scholars to view sovereignty as the cause of the environmental problematique see, for example, van der Lugt, 2000 , but holistic talk of 'ecological interdependence' and the need for 'ecological sovereignty' to counter sovereignty as conventionally understood would appear to embody an idealism so far...

Acid Rain Precedes Global Warming

The issue of global warming was discussed at some length at the 1972 Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment when climate change was accepted as a research issue and a UN institute for planetary survival was proposed by the USA after a considerable domestic debate which brought German and American scientists together Kellogg and Schware, 1981 . However, the political climate, supported by energy policy concerns, was ready only for concerns about acid rain rather than for global warming...

Institutionalizing scientific advice designing consensus as a policy driver

The negotiation of the Kyoto Protocol and the decisions afterwards to give it effect, as we have seen, largely amount to an attempt to resolve conflicts of interests. Strong normative or rhetorical discourse not only did not help the process but, we suggest above, actually made agreement more difficult. Differences between significant parties were hardened, keeping them in 'different discourses' for so long that the quality of what was agreed suffered considerably. But what of the unifying...