The year 2015 is the time at which the successor the Kyoto Protocol is set to be finalised, with the deadline for implementation set for 2020, when the Kyoto Protocol’s agreement is up.
What is the Kyoto Protocol?
First signed in 1997, then brought into effect in 2005, the Kyoto Protocol, or Kyoto Agreement, is an international treaty that was set in place in order to ensure a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from the planet’s industrialised countries. It was set up as part of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which is itself a treaty whose goal is to reduce the threat of human influence on global climate.
It was set in place after it was deemed that the most developed countries on the planet were responsible for an overwhelming amount of the world’s carbon emissions as a by-product of over 150 years of industrial processes.
There were 192 countries that signed the agreement, this included every country in the EU and the UN, except Andora, Canada, South Sudan, and the USA.
It was undertaken in two stages: the first commitment period between 2008-2012, and the current second commitment period from 2013 to 2020. During these periods, strict limits were set for the number of emissions produced, and the expected reduction from each individual state.
The second period has seen a few nations drop out of the agreement, whilst the protocol’s demands have increased.
The Kyoto Protocol isn’t solely about reducing emissions but is also a staunch advocate of renewable energy sources and the reduction of global deforestation.
The 2012 United Nations Climate Change Conference
Having taken place in Doha, Qatar, this conference marked the end of the Kyoto Protocol’s first agreement and the beginning of the next. It was at this conference that an agreement was made for the protocol’s successor must be developed and agree upon by 2015. During the following years, until 2020, the UNFCCC states that global greenhouse emissions must be cut by 15%.
It was also agreed upon at this conference that all countries around the world must start working together, with no exceptions, in 2015 as the protocol’s call for reductions increased.
The 2015 Kyoto Protocol and Beyond
Having finally taken the step to include all the countries around the world, the new 2015 Kyoto agreement will see massive leaps taken towards the reduction of greenhouse emissions.
With the promising results demonstrated between the years of 2005 and 2014, we can only hope to see even greater reductions made. Getting all countries to agree and implement change will be a real uphill struggle though, and I’m sure it won’t be plain sailing!
Image by Pavel Ahmed