The Debate Over the Definition of Danger, and How it Effects Global Warming" In the February 1 st edition of the New York Times, journalist Andrew C. Revkin discusses rising threat of global warming, and more importantly, the disagreement between various nations and institutions upon the definition of "dangerously high global warming." Revkin's article, titled "Deciding How Much Global Warming Is Too Much," brings to light the various failed attempts at creating a barrier at which industrialized countries (the main producers of the greenhouse gasses which result in global warming) will cut the release of harmful gasses into the atmosphere. Revkin also discusses how upcoming events, conferences; reports will hopefully solve this problem. The initial proposal for controlling global warming was signed over 11 years ago, in these proposal 193 countries agreed to cut human interference with the environment, if the environment were to reach a level of certain danger. However, within this treaty there is no specific definition of danger. This lack of a clear description of danger has led to one failed conference, Kyoto, and hundreds of countries, scientists, and policymakers to attempt an agreement on the level of damage caused by global warming.
Recently, many countries have requested a definition of unacceptable risk by measuring and comparing the change in average temperature. The European Union has responded to these requests by agreeing upon the raise in temperature of 2. 5 degrees or beyond as being far too dangerous. This increase in temperature has been accepted by an international panel of scientists, policymakers, business leaders, and elected officials.
On the other hand, there are many researchers who claim that the affects of global warming are still far too premature, and therefore, there cannot be a fair temperature target. Instead of instituting temperature targets, supporters of the later theory have suggested adapting society to the changes in climate, or even moving inland to avoid rising sea levels. Due to the various theories that have been proposed, not all countries have agreed on controlling the environment in the same way. The United States, for example, has refused the proposals at the Kyoto conferences and is currently being pressured by Tony Blair to join other industrial nations that have curbed the emission of harmful gasses. Revkin stated in his article that an intergovernmental climate control group is to present a report expected to be the most comprehensive understanding of global warming. Regardless of the plan that is put into effect for reversing the negative effects of global warming, if any exist at all, it is imperative that a definition of dangerous be drafted.
Many scientists say that the process of preventing global warming from reaching dangerous levels has already taken too long, and at this rate the negative effects of dangerous gasses will not be reversible. Some of the effects that could result from global warming range from floods, droughts, and a rise in sea level causing erosion in beaches. This threat of global warming does not effect only future generations but can effect current generations as well, for this reason; prevention and resolution of global warming must be made.