agriculture, transportation and commercial and residen- 2020 from a wide variety of sources to help developing
tial building sectors; and countries cut carbon emissions and adapt to climate
change. No agreement was made as to how much indi-
● an Environmental Code to establish standards, guide- vidual countries would contribute to or benefit from any
lines, and best practices for reducing emissions by large funds.
emitters and other sectors.
EPA Moves To Regulate Greenhouse Gas
NORTH AMERICAN AND WORLD Emissions
UPDATES In September 2009, the U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) took steps to regulate and curtail greenhouse
gas (GHG) emissions in the United States. Although a com-
prehensive legislative package is preferred to piecemeal
Copenhagen Climate Talks End with Bare regulation, the Obama Administration indicated it was
unwilling to just sit by and wait until Congress passed a
Minimum Accord climate bill.
The United Nations climate talks in Copenhagen that
The first move, in late September, was the issuance of
began on December 7th and ended on December 20th
a final rule that will require large GHG emitters to collect
have ended with the 193 participating countries ‘‘taking
and report GHG emissions data, beginning on 1 January
note’’ of a non-binding ‘‘Copenhagen Accord’’ that sets a
2010. The program will cover approximately 85% of U.S.
target of limiting global warming to a maximum of two
GHG emissions, and will apply to roughly 10,000 facilities.
degrees Celsius over pre-industrial times, holds out the
prospect of $100 billion in annual aid from 2020 for devel- ‘‘This is a major step forward in our effort to address
oping nations (without specifying where these funds would the [GHGs] polluting our skies’’, said EPA Administrator Lisa
come from), and pushes decisions on core issues, Jackson. ‘‘The American public, and industry itself, will
including emissions reductions, into the future. finally gain critically important knowledge and with this
information we can determine how best to reduce those
A further round of climate talks is scheduled for
November 2010 in Mexico, where negotiators are hoping
to be able to agree a new treaty to replace the Kyoto Fossil fuel and industrial GHG suppliers, motor vehicle
Protocol, the latest round of which ends in 2012. and engine manufacturers, and facilities that emit
25,000 metric tons or more of carbon dioxide equivalent
The following is a shortlist of key outcomes (or lack
(CO2e) per year will be required to report GHG emissions
thereof) from the Copenhagen round:
annually. This threshold is equivalent to roughly the annual
● There was no decision on whether to agree to a legally GHG emissions from 4,600 passenger vehicles.
binding successor to the Kyoto Protocol, whether to sign
The first reports for the largest emitting facilities will be
one new treaty replacing Kyoto or