In the world of international environmental agreements, two prominent names stand out – the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. While both aim to address global climate change, they differ in several key aspects.
The Kyoto Protocol
The Kyoto Protocol, adopted in 1997, was the first international treaty to set binding obligations on industrialized countries to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. It aimed to combat the adverse effects of climate change by establishing legally binding emission reduction targets.
Under the Kyoto Protocol, developed countries committed to reducing their emissions by an average of 5.2% below 1990 levels by the period 2008-2012. However, it only covered a limited number of countries and did not include major emitters like the United States and China.
The Paris Agreement
The Paris Agreement, adopted in 2015, built upon the principles of the Kyoto Protocol but introduced a more flexible and inclusive approach. It aimed to limit global warming well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
The Paris Agreement introduced a bottom-up approach, where countries voluntarily set their own targets, known as Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). Unlike the Kyoto Protocol, the Paris Agreement covers all countries, making it more comprehensive and inclusive.
Comparing the Two
When comparing the subject-verb agreement between the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement, it becomes clear that the latter has several advantages. The Paris Agreement’s flexibility allows countries to adapt their targets based on their own circumstances and capabilities, making it more likely for countries to actively participate in emissions reduction efforts.
Additionally, the Paris Agreement incorporates a stronger framework for transparency and accountability, ensuring that countries regularly report on their progress towards their NDCs. This transparency fosters international cooperation and peer pressure, encouraging countries to take action to combat climate change.
Furthermore, the Paris Agreement recognizes the importance of financial support and technology transfer to developing countries in their efforts to mitigate and adapt to climate change. It establishes the commitment of developed countries to provide financial resources to support developing countries’ climate actions.
While the Kyoto Protocol laid the groundwork for international climate action, the Paris Agreement represents a significant advancement in addressing global climate change. Its inclusive nature, voluntary targets, and emphasis on transparency and support make it a more comprehensive and effective agreement in the fight against climate change.