Greenhouse break

Last Updated: Saturday 04 July 2015 | 03:16:47 AM

Greenhouse Regime: Who pays? Edited by Peter Hayes and Kirk Smith wrs: Earthscan Publications Ltd, $19.95

-- AFTER the world community woke up to mid fact of living in warmer climes, of the first things they did was to jibe Climate Change Convention. ir then, they have been scurrying Wd to create a global greenhouse Mw. which requires both industrid and developing countries to jointWelder the responsibilities of tack16t problems of climate change.

But what drives an acrimonious wedge into the bonhomi6 of negotiations is the issue of allocating responsibility for creating the greenhouse effect. Since the Convention failed to make funding provisions to implement the regime, a question still hangs fire: who is to pay for the mess?

This book attempts to answer these questions and provides a "composite index" to determine who should cough up the cash to create a global greenhouse gas regime. The composite index mixes economic realism and historical contribution: the ability to pay acts as a politico -economic balance to the "polluter pays" principle. It is based on the recognition that developing countries are minor participants in the emergence of the greenhouse effect, the larger portion of the miasma resting firmly on the North's table.

The composite index is the archstone in co-editor Hayes' proposal to distribute the cost of meeting emission targets imposed by the climate change agreement. Under the UN scale, the North pays about 77 per cent, the former Soviet Union and Eastern Europe about 14 per cent, and the developing world about 9 per cent of the ikulatkms total 9pst. In Hayes' calculation, the obligation to pay, respectively, is about 73 per cent, 20 per cent and about 7 per cent. Hayes further estimates the annual transfer from the North to the South to range between $29-34 billion. He also examines how these funds can be collected through carbon taxes by the sale of tradeable or abatement permits.

Other contributors, drawn from Australia, North Arn&ica, India, Africa, South America, the Pacific Islands and Europe, present the regional impact of carbon abatement costs. The book also recognises the vulnerability of island states to climate change and deak the proposal of an insurance schen forward by the members of the of Small Island States. Michael suggests that an insurance fun established to cover the costs of a ing to sea-level rise.

The global greenhouse regino rare opportunity to form a coad which transcends national bou" However, its creation could take in the interim, regional coopen might well be the order of the ing as building blocks for regime, the authors argue.

This work of environm diplomacy is valuable because it to ly implicates the Goliaths am the nations comprising today's a order in the context of global ing. A product of scholars parts of the globe, the book alwi vides comprehensive interdiscipm viewpoints.

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