Responses to Climate Change
Responses to Climate Change
Singapore Green Plan 2012
Launched by the MInistry of Environment in 2002
Aimed to generate 60% of Singapore's energy using natural gas by 2012
Natural gas was a cleaner form of energy than coal
->does not produce smoke
In 2010, about 79% of Singapore's electricity was generated from natural gas, exceeding MInistry's target ahead of schedule
Pipelines have high maintenance costs -> need to be laid underground and checked regularly for leakage.
Natural gas requires a complex treatment plants to process and pipelines for transport.
Green Mark Scheme
Launched by the Building Construction Authority
Allows buildings to be evaluated and certified according to how energy-efficient and environmentally friendly they are.
aims to encourage more new 'green' buildings, which are more energy-efficient.
energy-efficient -> use less energy to provide the same service.
existing 'green' buildings such as Plaza by the Park have reported energy savings of 15%-35% compared to conventional buildings.
Cuts down GH gas emissions by reducing the use of fossil fuels to generate electricity.
Construction companies and developers in Singapore tend to be conservative about adopting new ideas and materials to build 'green' buildings
'Green' buildings cost more to build because 'green' materials may be more expensive. eg.Bamboo, recycled metals.
Started in 1971 as Tree-Planting Day by the Garden City Fund and Singapore Environment Council
Aims to maintain Singapore's status as a Garden City by planting trees
Residents are encouraged to take part in tree planting activities that take place monthly or donate money to buy a tree.
Trees take many years to mature, positive side effects of treestake time to materialise
Even fast growing trees such as the angsana, raintrees and yellow flames take 25 years to fully mature.
Programme has contributed to estimated 60,000 trees planted yearly throughout Singapore by the NParks.
Trees can remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, (are the green lungs of the earth)
kyoto protocol 1997
China and USA didn't sign the treaty
Global CO2 emissions from the consumption of fossil fuels were 53% higher in 2012 than they were in 1990
The Kyoto Protocol required efforts from industrialized countries only, even though emerging and developing countries are responsible for a growing share of emissions
Global emissions have showed no sign of slowing down
Many countries have met/exceeded the targets set by the protocol (eg Finland, Greece & Ireland)
Successful in encouraging sustainable development and helping countries reduce GHgas emissions
It was unquestionably an important first step in global climate diplomacy
Paris Summit 2015
Current country pledges are too low to lead to a temperature rise below the Paris Agreement temperature limit of "well below 2 °C"
Lack of binding enforcement mechanism: most of the agreement consists of "promises" or aims and not firm commitments
The CO2 reduction commitments in the agreement will not kick in until 2020
The demands stated in the agreement on developing and developed countries are qualitatively different. The phrase “common but differentiated responsibilities” which was repeated many times in the agreement, suggests that developed countries are subject to weaker obligations than developing countries, which raises the issue of transparency.
192 states have signed the Agreement (as of December 2016)
The first step towards reducing global warming on such as large/global scale
EEach country will be expected to contribute a new national plan for reducing emissions every 5 years, so rather than dissipating most of their energies fighting over the architecture of a global climate agreement, countries will focus productively on their emissions-cutting initiatives instead.
Targets set are insufficient to reduce GHgas emissions to within 2'C
Targets set by various countries to reduce GHgas emissions were a guideline rather than a condition that must be fulfilled
No agreement made on how the reduction of GHgases is to be carried out, making it difficult for countries to take any action
Many developed countries have refused to sign the Copenhagen Accord
Brought together important political figures to discuss measures that will address climate change
Targets for GHgas emissions were set
Developed countries committed to reducing GHgas emissions by 2020