Talk:Global Climate Coalition
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- Scientists agree that the greenhouse effect is a real, naturally occurring phenomenon. Greenhouse gases trap the sun's warmth in the lowest layers of the atmosphere, keeping Earth warm enough to sustain life. Without the natural greenhouse effect, the average surface temperature on Earth would fall to about zero degrees Fahrenheit (-18C). The earth's average temperature is about 60 degrees Fahrenheit (F), but in the natural greenhouse effect, atmospheric water vapor and clouds play a far greater role than other greenhouse gases. To put this in perspective, even if all man-made greenhouse gases were to disappear, water vapor and clouds would still leave us with almost all of the current greenhouse effect.
- Scientists also agree that atmospheric levels of greenhouse gases (such as CO2) are increasing as a result of human activity. But scientists differ on the rate and magnitude of the 'enhanced greenhouse effect' (warming) that will result due to the increase in the concentrations of these gases or warming of the planet because the role of greenhouse gases in climate change is not well understood.
- The Global Climate Coalition believes that climate change is a long-term, global issue, and therefore policies to address climate concerns must also be designed for the long-term by all nations. The GCC believes that it is imperative that climate policies focus on responsible voluntary actions, including further research, innovation and deployment of current and potential future technologies in developed and developing nations to address concerns about the climate. Unrealistic targets and timetables, such as those called for under the
Kyoto Protocol, are not achievable without severely harming the US economy and all American families, workers, seniors and children. A new approach to climate policy is needed.
- The 21st Century Climate Action Agenda is intended to serve as a living document to help guide the Global Climate Coalition in its continuing partnerships with policymakers in the international community, in the Congress, and in the current and future Administrations to responsibly and effectively respond to global concerns about the climate.
- Since its inception, GCC has been a leading voice for business and industry in the climate change debate both domestically and internationally. GCC has represented its membership at all international negotiations including those in Rio de Janeiro, Geneva, Berlin, Kyoto,
Bonn and Buenos Aires. GCC is also involved with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), providing comments on and peer review of the IPCC's scientific assessment summaries.
The Global Climate Coalition is active in the debate on global climate issues because of the concern its members share about the potentially enormous impact that improper resolution of those issues could have on the nation's industrial base, our customers and their lifestyles, and the national economy. To respond effectively to those issues, and still avoid unnecessary social and economic disruptions, the Global Climate Coalition advocates the following principles as a reasoned approach to general climate change. 1 The issues relating to global climate change are serious ones that must be addressed comprehensively and equitably by all nations.
2 Science must serve as the foundation for overall global climate policy decisions and enhanced scientific research must be the first priority. 3 Even if all of the scientific uncertainties were resolved, sound policy decisions must consider the economic and social impacts of alternative policy choices. 4 The United States can make important contributions to improving the global environment and conditions for development by encouraging technology transfer to developing nations, Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union. Scientific foundation
A bedrock principle for addressing global climate change issues is that science - not emotional or political reactions - must serve as the foundation for global climate policy decisions. Policy decisions, made without benefit of adequate scientific understanding of the complex global change phenomenon, could have far-reaching and unnecessary social and economic impacts, including altered energy use and employment patterns, and perhaps fundamental lifestyle changes. Indeed, strategies that provoke serious economic, social, environmental, or political dislocations could affect worldwide development as profoundly as any potential adverse climate change.
Existing scientific evidence does not support actions aimed solely at reducing or stabilizing greenhouse gas emissions. GCC does support actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions or to increase greenhouse gas sinks that are justified for other economic or environmental reasons.
Global climate change must be addressed comprehensively and equitably by all nations. The United States must not pursue a course of unilateral punitive measures to stabilize or reduce emissions: to do so would impose severe and inequitable burdens on our economy, our citizens and our competitiveness. Drastic reductions in US greenhouse gas emissions would not yield significant reductions in global emissions. Any US action must be part of an equitable multilateral agreement that minimizes trade and domestic economic distortions. The active cooperation of developing countries is essential for any effective global response to global climate change. Developing nations already account for a significant portion of total emissions, and their contributions are expected to account for the bulk of greenhouse gas emissions by 2025.