Slightly embarrassed, Japan’s Environment Minister Ichiro Kamashito cut a giant 1.5 metre-high cake which the Solar Generation, Greenpeace’s youth group, arranged to celebrate the 10th birthday of the Kyoto Protocol, in Bali, on 11 December.
Japan's Environment Minister, Ichiro Kamoshita, cuts the cake celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Kyoto Protocol, presented at the international meeting on climate change in Bali by the Solar Generation.
(For the metrically-challenged, like some of us here at
Greenpeace, that's very nearly 5 feet of gateau!).
No scantily-clad activist emerged from inside the cake...the
embarrassment was due to Kyoto's host country, Japan - assisted
by Australia and Canada - doing its best during the current UN
climate negotiations to prevent its offspring Protocol from growing
The three-tier cake, decorated with forests, orangutans and
symbols of renewable energy, including wind turbines and solar
panels, carried the words 'Happy 10th Birthday Kyoto'.
Kyoto has defied attempts by the US Administration to kill it.
Better yet, the agreement is working. That's according to the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change - which picked up its
Nobel Peace Prize this week, in Oslo.
The IPCC's report earlier this year was clear: "The Kyoto
Protocol's most notable achievements are the stimulation of an
array of national policies, the creation of a carbon market and the
establishment of new institutional mechanisms."
Now Kyoto needs to be fed the healthy diet of a strong Bali
mandate for governments to commit to deep and legally-binding cuts
in greenhouse gas emissions when the Protocol is in its mid
What's holding Kyoto back, according to the IPCC, is its "modest
emissions limits." The pre-eminent scientific body on climate
change wrote, "It would be more effective if the first commitment
period is followed-up by measures to achieve deeper reductions and
the implementation of policy instruments covering a higher share of
We could not agree more. Kyoto is the most far-reaching
environmental treaty ever agreed, with almost every country in the
world committing to some form of action in the fight against
So let's give three cheers to Kyoto and wish it many happy
This is one birthday cake on which the candles must be kept
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