My Country Is Greener Than Your Country
Today, it's PM Yasuo Fukuda of Japan:
As for how Japan will take the lead in becoming a society with low carbon dioxide emissions, Fukuda presented such steps as formulating a plan aimed at developing innovative technologies to fundamentally solve global warming.
Fukuda said that by cooperating with local governments, he plans to designate about 10 cities as "environment model cities" that would work to drastically reduce gas emissions.
"Our country...has realized the world's highest energy efficiency. By using such 'environmental power' to the fullest, I will promote a shift to a low-carbon society, which will serve as a precedent for the world," Fukuda said.
Fukuda also said he will create a "financial mechanism" to help developing countries implement measures to deal with damage stemming from global warming such as droughts and floods and promote measures to reduce emissions of greenhouse gasses [sic]. (Kyodo)
Presumably Fukuda has some reason to believe the residents of those ten cities actually want to be global warming guinea pigs at some great cost and that his nation is as thrilled as he about becoming a low-carbon emporium.
Of course he's spot-on right about the third world stuff: Tin-pan dictators from Uruguay to Uzbekistan will gladly burden their people with new debt so they to the "my global warming program is bigger than your global warming program" strut at the next big confab.But Fukuda has competition, though. Like this, from Germany's Angela Merkel:
In a speech dominated by thoughts on economics and ecology, Merkel urged the US to commit to a new global pact on curbing carbon emissions, while welcoming US President George Bush's "sensible" proposal to cut US petrol use by 20 percent over the next decade.Merkel trumps Fukuda by verbally pushing around the globe's Numero Uno, telling W and all of us that we ought to cut our gas-fueled productivity, comfort and fun by 20 percent. I'm all for conservation, but having some Kraut chick tell us what to do ... well, I don't think too much of that.
"We know that politics alone is not sufficient to prevent the further consequences of climate change," Merkel said.
"We need a binding commitment, a binding regime that includes all of those who produce emissions," she added.
Gordon Brown jumps in, too, from his year-end speech:
To lead in safeguarding the environment, the climate change bill will make Britain the first country to legislate legally-binding cuts in carbon emissions.Whoa, Gordo! Mandatory, legally binding emission reductions! And Angie just said we "need" a binding commitment -- she's not got the huevos to go and declare it so!
And so it goes, leaders trying to outdo each other, one-upping each others' policies, all to save a world that, I still believe, is not the least bit receptive to what these egomaniacs declare.
Industries of all kinds have marched aggressively towards greater and greater efficiency over the last couple centuries -- all without a pen-stroke or an oratorical flourish from political peacocks like these. but that's just a bunch of quiet engineers doing their work ... not the stuff that fuels a global leader's ego, so open your mouths, People of Earth, and prepare to be force fed.