Bjørn Lomborg

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日本は世界の気候政策をより賢い方向へと先導している

投稿日: 2013年12月24日 13時44分

2013年11月23日まで続いた第19回国連気候変動枠組み条約締約国会議と同様、過去20年にわたる国際的な気候変動の交渉は、基本的に何一つ成果をあげてきませんでした。しかしそこで日本は勇敢にも、非現実的な目標を捨てて、グリーン技術の研究開発に専念すると発表しましたが、これはもっと賢い気候政策に向けたブレークスルーの始まりになるかもしれません。

日本は、これまでの1990年水準から25%減らすという温室ガス削減目標が実現不可能だと認め、2020年までに排出量が3%増えるとみたほうが現実的だと述べました。これはワルシャワの気候サミットで、当然のように批判を引き起こしました。国連気候変動事務局長クリスティナ・フィゲレスとEU代表は、遺憾の意と失望を表明していますし、中国も失望を述べ、活動家たちは「とんでもない」「貧困国への打撃」と評しています。

日本は単に、過去20年にわたって失敗し続けてきたアプローチを諦めたに過ぎません。過去20年、炭酸ガス排出の削減を約束してはそれが結局実現しなかったり、持続可能なほどの高コストをかけて、無意味なほどわずかに削減したりしてきただけです。そしてほとんどみんなが無視したのは、日本が5年かけて官民両方から11兆円の資金を環境エネルギー技術のイノベーションに投入すると約束したことです。

このアプローチは、地球温暖化に対するこれまでの政策とは大きくちがいます。実はこのアプローチは、残念ながらワルシャワ会議の議題にすら入っていませんでした。つまり、効率の悪い再生可能エネルギーに補助金を注ぎ込むかわりに、新エネルギー源に対してずっと安上がりで効率の高い投資ができるということです。実はこのアプローチは気候変動に取り組む最も賢いアプローチですし、成長のために安いエネルギーを必要とする貧困国には特に大きな助けとなります。日本は――意外に思えるかもしれませんが――地球温暖化に効率的に取り組む方法を世界に実証してくれることになるかもしれないのです。

世界はすでに、一日千億円を非効率な再生可能エネルギーに費やしています――2013年の総額は 36兆円と予測されています。でも世界で研究開発にたった10兆円費やすほうが、何百倍も効率的です。これはコペンハーゲン・コンセンサスセンターが主催する、ノーベル賞学者3人を含む経済学者のパネルが出した結論でもあります。 コペンハーゲン・コンセンサスセンターは、政府が世界を助けるための最適な支出方法について調査発表するシンクタンクです。

しかしワルシャワの気候変動サミットでは、炭素排出削減についての拘束力を持つ世界的な合意にばかり無意味にこだわっていました。これは失敗に終わった1997年京都議定書の要点でした。ほとんどの炭酸ガス大量放出国は京都議定書の制限を受けなかったり(中国とインド)、そもそも参加しなかったり(アメリカ)、約束を実現できなかった(カナダ)のです。

京都以後、もうやる気も失われていました。2012年ダーバン会議の後で、インドの環境相は「インドの現在の発展段階では、法的に拘束力のある排出削減合意には同意できない」と述べました。会議の翌日、カナダは京都議定書を脱退し、ロシアと日本はそれ以前に議定書延長を拒否しました。

わずかな結果のためのすさまじい支出にこだわり続けているのは、ヨーロッパとその他数カ国だけです。EU は2020年までに炭酸ガス排出を1990年水準から20%減らすと約束しています。現存するエネルギー経済モデルすべての平均を取ると, これは年に25兆円かかることになります。今世紀末までに(2000兆円以上の費用をかけて)、これで下がる予想気温はたったの0.05度です。

ワルシャワのCOP19で温暖化ガス削減目標値が表明できなかったことに、大した驚きは感じませんでした。これまでの「ブレークスルー」を振り返って見ましょう。京都でカナダは、1990年水準から6%削減を表明しましたが、結局は24%の増加に終わりました。2009年コペンハーゲンサミットで、日本は25%削減というすさまじい約束を行いましたがこれも放棄されました。中国も、炭素濃度を2005年水準から40-45%下げると約束しました。実に勇ましくきこえますが、国際エネルギー機関によれば、中国は特に何の政策がなくても、炭素濃度はどのみち40%下がるとのこと。経済発展にともない、中国も炭素排出の少ない産業に移行するからです。

人間文明のトレンドは、再生可能エネルギーを減らす方向に進んできました。 1800年に世界エネルギーの94% は再生可能エネルギー、つまり薪と風力でした。今日ではそれがたった13%です。でも「再生可能」に分類されるもののほとんどは、貧困者が薪やゴミを燃料に使っているものです。アフリカはエネルギーの50%近くをそうしたエネルギー源から得ています。中国の再生可能エネルギー比率は、1971年には40%だったのが、反映するにつれて今日の11%にまで下がりました。

富裕国は風車やソーラーパネルを設置しますが、これはCO2排出こそ少ないものの、高価だし得られる電力も不安定です。スペインはいまやGDPの1%を 再生可能エネルギー向けの補助金に費やしています――これは高等教育にかけている金額以上です。でもこれは持続可能ではないし、多くの国はこれを真似たいとは思わないでしょう。次の2015年のパリでも、人々にもっと高価で信頼性の低いエネルギー源への以降を無理強いするような合意が実現するとは期待できません。

大量のサミット会議や非効率なグリーン技術への何兆円もの補助金を費やしても、CO2排出は1990年以来57%ほど増えました。まちがったやり方を何度も何度も後押しするのはやめて、別のアプローチを考えるべきです。経済学的に見れば、最も賢い長期解決策は、再生可能エネルギーの利用に補助金を出すことではなく、研究開発を通じてグリーンエネルギーのイノベーションに専念することです。こうしたイノベーションは、将来の風力やソーラーなど各種の驚異的な可能性について、コストを引き下げることになります。

もしグリーン技術が化石燃料よりも安くなれば、ごくわずかな善意の金持ちだけでなく、みんなが再生可能エネルギーに切り替えます。結局は何の成果も挙げられない気候サミットに集まる必要もなくなります。気候サミットの賢い解決策は、GDPの0.2%――世界で年総額10兆円――をグリーンエネルギー源の研究開発に使うことです。分析によれば、これはみんなのほしがるような安い環境に優しいエネルギー源を作り出し、中期的には地球温暖化を解決できるはずなのです。

繰り返し失敗してきたアプローチを放棄したといって日本政府を責めてはいけません。もっと大きな視点を持って、本当に地球温暖化を解決できる政策にコミットした日本政府は、賞賛されるべきなのです。

コペンハーゲン・コンセンサスセンター所長
ビョルン・ロンボルグ

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  • Yummy Pancake Breakfasts

    It may be a bit harder to drown your pancakes in maple syrup in the future, <a href="http://greenliving.nationalgeographic.com/effects-global-warming-maple-syrup-production-20078.html" target="_hplink">studies suggest</a>. According to <a href="http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/Nov10/SyrupClimate.html" target="_hplink">a 2010 Cornell University study</a>, "maple syrup production in the Northeast is expected to slightly decline by 2100, and the window for tapping trees will move earlier by about a month." Additionally, most maple syrup production south of Pennsylvania "will likely be lost by 2100 due to lack of freezing." <a href="http://www.motherjones.com/blue-marble/2012/01/no-maple-syrup-2100" target="_hplink">Click here to watch one farmer's fight to save New Hampshire's sugar maples.</a>

  • Gone Fishin'

    According to a <a href="http://www.nrdc.org/globalwarming/ntrout.asp" target="_hplink">2002 study by the Natural Resources Defense Council and Defenders of Wildlife</a>, a warming planet does not bode well for species that thrive in cold streams. The study found that "global warming is likely to spur the disappearance of trout and salmon from as much as 18 to 38 percent of their current habitat by the year 2090." A 2011 study published in the <em>Proceedings of the National Academies of Science</em> produced "models [which] forecast significant declines in trout habitat across the interior western United States in the 21st century," <a href="http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/08/16/trout-fishing-in-a-climate-changed-america/" target="_hplink">reported <em>The New York Times</em></a>. The study claims, "The decline will have significant socioeconomic consequences as recreational trout fisheries are valued in the hundreds of millions of dollars in the United States alone."

  • NYC's Waterfront Real Estate

    According to a 2012 report from New Jersey-based nonprofit <a href="http://sealevel.climatecentral.org/" target="_hplink">Climate Central</a>, thousands of New York City residents may be at risk for severe <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/15/rising-sea-levels-threate_n_1347333.html" target="_hplink">coastal flooding as a result of climate change</a>. <a href="http://slr.s3.amazonaws.com/factsheets/New_York.pdf" target="_hplink">Climate Central explains</a>, "the NY metro area hosts the nation's highest-density populations vulnerable to sea level rise." They argue, "the funnel shape of New York Harbor has the potential to magnify storm surges already supplemented by sea level rise, threatening widespread areas of New York City."

  • The Best Part Of July 4th

    With droughts and wildfires hitting many parts of the U.S., municipalities from <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/03/colorado-wildfires-2012-f_n_1647571.html" target="_hplink">Colorado</a> to <a href="http://www.nashvillescene.com/pitw/archives/2012/07/03/climate-change-is-totally-ruining-your-4th-of-july" target="_hplink">Tennessee</a> canceled July 4th public fireworks displays or banned personal fireworks this year, citing the fire hazards they posed. In June, a <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/12/climate-change-wildfires_n_1588741.html" target="_hplink">study published in the journal <em>Ecosphere</em></a> found that almost all of North America will see more wildfires by 2100, reported Reuters. The study's lead author, Max Moritz, said, "In the long run, we found what most fear - increasing fire activity across large areas of the planet."

  • The Non-.com Amazon

    Along with <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/06/brazil-amazon-rainforest-deforestation-levels_n_1130554.html" target="_hplink">deforestation</a>, climate change also poses a serious threat to South America's Amazon rainforest. A 2009 study from the U.K. Met Office found that a global temperature rise of four degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels would cause 85 percent of the Amazon to die off in the next 100 years. Even a two degree Celsius rise would kill 20 to 40 percent of the rainforest, <a href="http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/mar/11/amazon-global-warming-trees" target="_hplink">reported the <em>Guardian</em></a>. In May, The Club of Rome think tank predicted a global average temperatures rise of "2 degrees Celsius by 2052 and a 2.8 degree rise by 2080," <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/08/club-of-rome-climate-change_n_1499183.html" target="_hplink">reported Reuters</a>. Jorgen Randers, author of the club's report, said, "It is unlikely that governments will pass necessary regulation to force the markets to allocate more money into climate-friendly solutions, and (we) must not assume that markets will work for the benefit of humankind." He added, "We are emitting twice as much greenhouse gases every year as are absorbed by the world's forests and oceans. This overshoot will worsen and will peak in 2030."

  • Island Getaways

    As global sea levels rise during the 21st century, low-lying island nations like the Maldives could see their very existence threatened. With a three to six foot sea level rise predicted by 2100, nations like the Maldives could become uninhabitable, <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/cwire/2011/05/25/25climatewire-island-nations-may-keep-some-sovereignty-if-63590.html" target="_hplink">explained <em>The New York Times</em></a>. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/06/mohamed-nasheed-maldives-climate-change-united-states_n_1652409.html" target="_hplink">Maldives' former president, Mohamed Nasheed</a>, has been a tireless campaigner for the urgent need for countries to take action against climate change, arguing "You can't pick and choose on science."

  • Ski Bums

    Although seasonal fluctuations occur and El Nino/La Nina weather patterns affect snowfall, global temperature rise may impact conditions for skiers and boarders. "The long-term trend is less snow and earlier snowmelt. This means more frustration for snow sport enthusiasts and a negative impact on the snow sports industry," <a href="http://switchboard.nrdc.org/blogs/tspencer/skiing_snow_blog_2312.html" target="_hplink">writes the Natural Resources Defense Council's Theo Spencer</a>. In May, a snow-less ski race was held in Aspen, Colorado to "highlight the effect climate change has on the outdoor recreation industry," <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/06/aspen-ski-area-climate-change_n_1489390.html" target="_hplink">reported the Associated Press</a>.

  • Thanksgiving Dinner Food Comas

    A 2010 paper in the journal <em>Food Research International</em> found that climate change may one day affect the cost and quality of traditional Thanksgiving dishes, <a href="http://news.discovery.com/earth/thanksgiving-climate-change.html" target="_hplink">reported Discovery News</a>. Future temperature rises could impact the quality of turkey meat. Additionally, foods like "pumpkins, sweet potatoes, potatoes, grains [and] green beans ... will be sensitive to water shortages should they arise," study author Neville Gregory told Discovery News. In fact, common Thanksgiving foods were <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/21/thanksgiving-dinner-battles-weather_n_1099899.html" target="_hplink">impacted by weather events in 2011</a>, with shortages and price spikes hitting over the holidays.

  • "Lady & The Tramp"-Like Scenes

    Scientists at the British Met Office warn that Italy may soon be forced to<a href="http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/climate-threat-to-italys-pasta/story-e6frg6so-1225797946930" target="_hplink"> import the basic ingredients to make pasta because climate change will make it impossible to grow durum wheat domestically</a>. The crop could almost disappear from the country later this century, scientists say.

  • Super Duper Fast Wi-Fi Connection

    A 2011 report from the U.K.'s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs found that climate change could affect certain infrastructure, like wireless internet. <a href="http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/may/09/climate-change-wi-fi-connections" target="_hplink">The <em>Guardian</em> reports</a>, "higher temperatures can reduce the range of wireless communications, rainstorms can impact the reliability of the signal, and drier summers and wetter winters may cause greater subsidence, damaging masts and underground cables," according to secretary of state for the environment. The <em>Guardian</em> notes, "The government acknowledges that the impact of climate change on telecommunications is not well understood, but the report raises a series of potential risks."

  • The Great Smoky Mountains' Smoke

    The Great Smoky Mountains have the most annual rainfall in the southeastern U.S., which mostly falls as a light, misty rain, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/28/great-smoky-mountains-climate-change_n_1461482.html" target="_hplink">explains OurAmazingPlanet</a>. A study by a team from NASA's Precipitation Measurement Missions found that "light rainfall is the dominant form of precipitation in the region, accounting for 50 to 60 percent of a year's total, governing the regional water cycle." <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/28/great-smoky-mountains-climate-change_n_1461482.html" target="_hplink">OurAmazingPlanet</a> notes: <blockquote>The results suggest the area may be more susceptible to climate change than thought; as temperatures rise, more of the fine droplets from light rain will evaporate in the air and fail to reach the ground. Lower elevations will have to contend with not only higher temperatures, but less cloud cover.</blockquote>

  • California Beach Bums

    Along the California coast, beach communities are finding that it may be impossible to stop coastal erosion as global sea levels rise. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/02/beach-communities-moving-inward_n_1565122.html" target="_hplink">According to AP</a>, David Revell, a senior coastal scientist at <a href="http://www.pwa-ltd.com/" target="_hplink">ESA PWA</a>, acknowledged the relentless power of the sea, saying, "I like to think of it as getting out of the way gracefully." A <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/22/west-coast-sea-level-rise_n_1619568.html" target="_hplink">report released in June by the Natural Resources Defense Council</a> found that West Coast ocean levels will rise several inches in the next few decades. Sea levels along the California coast are expected to be six inches higher by 2030 and three feet higher by the end of the century. Despite the risks, another recent NRDC study found that <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/08/california-climate-change-study_n_1409312.html" target="_hplink">California is one of several states</a> with the best plans to deal with the effects of climate change.

  • Repeats Of The Titanic

    2012 could be a record year for the extent of Arctic sea ice at its yearly summer minimum. Walt Meier, a research scientist at the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center, said that with recent satellite observations, "It definitely portends a low-ice year, whether it means it will go below 2007 (the record minimum in September), it is too early to tell," <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/18/arctic-sea-ice-levels_n_1605441.html" target="_hplink">reported LiveScience</a>. As sea ice declines in the Arctic, countries are anticipating a <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04/16/arctic-climate-change-military-activity_n_1427565.html" target="_hplink">competition for control of shipping lanes and mineral extraction</a> in the region. In Antarctica, research from the United States' Palmer Station on the Antarctic Peninsula has found that "87 percent of the peninsula's land-bound glaciers are in retreat," <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/12/environmental-threats-antarctica_n_1669023.html" target="_hplink">reported OurAmazingPlanet</a>. Decreasing sea ice levels were also addressed in <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/18/shell-arctic-ready-hoax-greenpeace_n_1684222.html" target="_hplink">a recent spoof of Shell's plans to drill for oil in the Arctic this summer</a>.

  • Crazy Sugar Highs

    Climate change has already impacted sugarcane production in Indonesia. In late 2011, the <a href="http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2011/11/09/sugar-association-blames-climate-change-production-drop.html http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2011/11/09/sugar-association-blames-climate-change-production-drop.html" target="_hplink">chairman of the Indonesian Sugarcane Farmers Association said</a>, "sugarcane production decreased by up to 30 percent in 2011 due to climate change that has occurred since 2009."

  • Warning Joe: Coffee Extinct in The Future?

    Climate changes and insect invasions threaten the future supply of morning joe.

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  • Lake Nasser

    Egypt's Lake Nasser was photographed in January 2005 from the International Space Station.

  • Sahara Desert

    Tassili n'Ajjer National Park, part of the Sahara Desert, has a bone-dry climate with scant rainfall, yet it doesn't blend in with Saharan dunes. Instead, the rocky plateau rises above the surrounding sand seas. This image from 2000 was made from multiple observations by the Landsat 7 satellite, using a combination of infrared, near-infrared and visible light to better distinguish among the park's various rock types.

  • Hydrogen Sulfide and Dust Plumes on Namibia's Coast

    Cloudless skies allowed a clear view of dust and hydrogen sulfide plumes along the coast of Namibia in early August 2010. Multiple dust plumes blow off the coast toward the ocean, most or all of them probably arising from stream beds. Unlike the reddish-tan sands comprising the dunes directly south of the Kuiseb River, the stream-channel sediments are lighter in color. Wind frequently pushes dust plumes seaward along the Namibian coast.

  • Islands of Four Mountains

    The snow-capped volcanoes composing the Islands of the Four Mountains in Alaska's Aleutian Island chain look suspiciously like alien worlds in this August 2010 image from the ASTER camera aboard NASA's orbiting Terra satellite.

  • Sarychev Volcano

    Astronauts at the International Space Station captured this striking view of the Sarychev volcano on Russia's Kuril Islands in an early stage of eruption on June 12, 2009. Sarychev Peak is one of the most active volcanoes in the Kuril Islands chain.

  • Arctic Eclipse

    NASA's Terra satellite was rounding the top of the globe -- making its way from the eastern tip of Siberia and across the Arctic Ocean toward northwest Russia -- when it captured this unique view of a total solar eclipse on Aug. 1, 2008. In the area shown in the image, the sun was obscured for about two minutes. As Earth rotated, the shadow moved southeast across the surface. At the same time, the satellite crossed the Arctic with its path nearly perpendicular to the eclipse.

  • Fargo

    The Advanced Land Imager on NASA's Earth Observing-1 satellite shows a snowy blanket over Fargo, N.D., on Dec. 12.

  • Island Beauty

    The south end of Eleuthera Island in the Bahamas shimmers in turquoise waters in this 2002 photo from the International Space Station.

  • Massive Sandstorm

    A massive sandstorm sweeps over Qatar as it races south toward southeastern Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates on Feb. 15, 2004. A major upper-level, low-pressure system over southwestern Asia led to a series of storms sweeping through the area. The crew of the International Space Station captured this image with a digital camera using a 50-millimeter lens.

  • Lake Naivasha, Kenya

    Flowers grow year round in sun-drenched Kenya, and nowhere are they more plentiful than Lake Naivasha, shown here. In this view from space, bright white squares mix with fields of green, tan and purple along the shores of the lake. Sunlight glints off the long rows of glass greenhouses, turning them silvery blue and white. Fallow fields are tan and pink, while growing plants turn the ground bright green. Roses, lilies and carnations are the most common flowers grown in the greenhouses and fields scattered around the lake.

  • Cumulonimbus Cloud Over Africa

    High above the African continent, tall, dense cumulonimbus clouds, meaning "cloud heap" in Latin, are the result of atmospheric instability. The clouds can form alone, in clusters or along a cold front in a squall line. The high energy of these storms is associated with heavy precipitation, lightning, high wind speeds and tornadoes.

  • NASA Released New Images of Earth at Night

    The new images were taken over 22 days by a satellite imaging system and provide the most detailed look yet at the world's night lights.



 
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