Chapter 12: The Environment and International Relations

Action:

Japan
Japan is the world's fifth largest carbon emitter. The developed country is likely to agree to a comprehensive climate change agreement, but that pact would have limited effect on future global emissions as Japan is not projected to be a key emitter in years to come as China, India, and Brazil develop.

Outcome:

As the president of the United States crafting national and international strategies for dealing with climate change, you have made a series of decisions. Let's analyze the implications of each of your choices.

First, you decided to subsidize renewable energy. This was a great decision as you have made the transition to low-cost renewable energy alternatives easier. Over time, the wind and nuclear energy industries will use your subsidies to innovate and drive down their costs. As renewable energy costs decrease, more and more businesses will spurn fossil fuels for renewables to fuel their industrial efforts. This will help the US meet its future emission reduction goals.

Second, you chose to pursue a bilateral agreement with Japan. The Japanese government agreed to binding long-term standards for emissions and technological exchange with major renewable energy firms in the US. This agreement will further help the fight on climate change as it will pave the way for similar agreements with other countries later on. However, you must keep in mind that developing countries such as China, India, and Brazil will control the future of climate change.

Overall, you have done a fair job. You made solid progress with regards to domestic energy policy. Furthermore, you crafted a solid agreement with Japan to ramp up its climate change response. Unfortunately, the impact of your bilateral agreement will be limited. As the threat of climate change looms large, the international community must band together and act before it is too late.


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