Why Global Regulations Don’t Work

Theoretically the idea of all countries working together to make the world a better place is a really good idea. Unfortunately, it loses something when you put it into practice. My current case in point–the debate over greenhouse gas emissions.

Breitbart.com reported yesterday that Brazil, South Africa, India and China have asked industrialized nations to step up their commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions at a key UN climate summit later this year. China’s climate change minister Xie Zhenua called for greater cooperation from industrialized countries. Well, wait a minute. This is ridiculous. This is like having a race with someone who when you take the lead says, “Stop, I need a chance to pass you so I can win.” Why are China and India not considered industrialized countries?

The article reports:

Former president George W. Bush said Kyoto was fatally flawed because it does not require developing giants, already major polluters, to take on similar constraints.

European countries are generally on track for their emissions reductions, but Canada is poised to miss its target by a wide margin.

At the same time, emissions by China, India, Indonesia and Brazil have rocketed — nations bound by Kyoto account for less than 30 percent of global CO2 emissions, which hit record levels in 2010.

Japan, Canada and Russia have said they will not sign up for a new round of carbon-cutting vows.

The European Union (EU) says it will only do so if other nations — including emerging giants such as China and India, which do not have binding targets — beef up efforts in a parallel negotiating arena.

Developing countries, though, insist the Protocol be renewed in its current form. 

Of course the developing countries want the Protocol renewed in its current form–it puts no restrictions on them, just on everyone else.

In September of 2010, a website called Alttransport.com reported:

For the first time this decade global CO2 emissions decreased 1.3 percent in 2009, according to a study published in the journal Environmental Research Letters. But that drop was offseted by a significant rise in emissions in China and India by 9 and 6 percent.

While the drop is a reason to celebrate, the decrease in emissions is linked to the slow global economy. China and India, on the other hand, have had two of the fastest growing economies — with India’s growth rate at about 8.6 percent and China’s at 10.3 percent.

I don’t wish any harm on the ‘developing’ counties–I just want to know at what point they cease to be ‘developing’ and become developed. It seems to me that with the amount of jobs outsourced from America to India, that maybe America should be seen as de-developing and India should be seen as developed. Considering the trade deficit between America and China, are we sure China is ‘developing,’ or is it developed? The debate over carbon emissions is another way to penalize countries that have achieved commercial success in an attempt to let other countries achieve that success. I have a better idea. If ‘developing’ countries truly want to become commercially successful, they need to look to the model of America at its founding–give everyone an equal chance to own property and to be successful. You’d be surprised what equal opportunity does to the growth of a country’s economy!
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