Environment - Kyoto Protocol

Globalisation in the 21st century: environmental challenges and international approaches

Over the past 30 years the existence of climate change became more obvious and climate change is an ever present topic in the media. Two recent examples of ecological side-effects of globalisation are Hurricane Sandy leaving the USA in devastation last October and Typhoon Haiyan ravaging the Philippines last week.
The objective of this essay is to show the consequences of climate change and how these challenges are addressed internationally based on the example of the Kyoto Protocol.
Environmental pollution is growing globally due to increased burning of fossil fuels and wood used by industrialised countries and rising economic powers such as China and India. Fossil fuel emissions, so called "greenhouse gases (GHG)", together with cattle's emissions, resulting from an increase in cattle breeding, form a layer in the atmosphere which traps the sun's heat and thereby causes the temperature underneath to rise. This is referred to as "global warming". The quantity of GHG produced worldwide is constantly rising.
Resulting from rising temperatures polar ice caps are melting which speeds up the heating process since the ice's efficiency as a cooling device is diminished. Rising temperatures cause more water to evaporate resulting in irregular weather phenomena, including droughts, floods and storms like hurricanes and typhoons.
Due to changes in the weather, plants and animals have either to adapt a new rhythm of life or will consequently die out. Harvest are delayed or do not take place leading to food shortage.
Especially the last point results in an increasing gap between those who can afford, the industrialised nations, and those who cannot, the developing countries.
Since those environmental challenges do not stop at national boundaries, the need for international action emerged and has from then on been a major topic in international politics resulting in countless...