by Mitchell Evans
So far on this blog we’ve discussed how Israel contributes to climate change and how Israel could be impacted by climate change. Being that Israel is the focus of so much political and religious interest they should be extremely concerned about how they will be impacted. However, Israel is still an extremely small region. No matter how much Israel attempts to mitigate the effects of climate change, their attempts will not be able to solve the problem. As you can see on the graph used for the contribution blog post, even though Israel emitts a lot more per square mile than many other countries, the country is not large enough to rival the CO2 emissions of the larger countries. This is also the case for mitigation. Point being, while Israel should attempt to mitigate the effects of climate change, the United States, China, India, Australia and the other larger countries need to lead by example.
Israel did it’s part to ratify the Kyoto protocol in 1998 and entered in to the force in 2005 (http://unfccc.int/kyoto_protocol/status_of_ratification/items/2613.php). This is a step in the right direction but the Kyoto Protocol has been widely critisized. Many say that the Montreal Protocol was more effective in combating climate change even though it focused on substances that deplete the ozone layer, which has nothing to do with global warming. Also, the Kyoto Protocol expires at the end of 2012. So, though Israel might have had good intentions in signing the Kyoto protocol, those intentions will not mean anything in 2013.
This is not to say that Israel is not doing anything to combat climate change. Thanks to the 2009 COP-15 conferrence in Copenhagen:
Israel “committed to a Green House Gas emission reduction target of 20% of expected growth based on a Business As Usual scenario by 2020.” (http://www.il.boell.org/web/52-487.html). Even with this scenario though, Israel is expected to have an 11% increase in green house gas emissions by 2025 (Ibid). In addition to this, Israel is doing it’s part to mitigate climate change through forestation efforts in the Negev desert (http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/israeli-ecologists-could-help-stop-global-warming-1.3168. Israel ” plans to expand the groves and forests in the Negev.” Hopefully that which is planted will be able to filter out enough CO2 to stabalize the increase in CO2 emissons that Israel is projected to have.
Though Israel might not be able to postively effect mitigation efforts as much as larger countries, they should still make a great effort because of how much attention they receive. Think about how awesome it would be if Israel received as much attention for it’s efforts to mitigate climate change, as it does for the conflicts within it’s borders. The region is small, it’s influcence is not. Therefore it should take climate change mitigation more seriously than other countries of it’s same size. The country is small but the stakes are high.