Just warming up?

Moving backwards on the environment

President Bush’s decision to pull the U.S. out of the Kyoto agreement on global warming amounted to a gratuitous dismissal of the decade-long negotiations on reducing greenhouse gases. With action on the Kyoto treaty permanently stalled in the U.S. Senate, Bush could easily have indicated his unhappiness with the treaty simply by letting it languish in Congress. By opting out of Kyoto, he undermined the credibility of the U.S. in signing future agreements and signaled to the rest of the world that the U.S. will go its own way in addressing global warming.

That solo act is hard to tolerate given that the U.S., with only 4 percent of the world’s population, releases about 25 percent of the world’s heat-trapping gases. Those figures underscore why U.S. participation is key to any global effort to reduce climate changes.


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