"After September 11th, the U.S. went to war with exactly the military it wanted; it planned to fight the war based on that military's strengths. The U.S. military that crossed the Kuwait-Iraq border in March of 2003 was the product of the past three decades of evolution, validated and accelerated by the unprecedented success of Operation Desert Storm. It was a military optimized to bring to bear all of the strengths of high-tech, advanced maneuver warfare that the American military establishment had mastered without equal. The equipment was state of the art and beyond, the training was the most-advanced in the world, the doctrine was the most mature and integrated it has ever been, and the Soldiers, Airmen, Marines, and Sailors the most capable in the U.S.'s history. Less than two years after the rapid overthrow of the Taliban in Afghanistan, the march to Baghdad was the fastest and farthest any military had ever conquered in the history of military operations."
This paper explores the interactions of international policy architecture and technology availability on the limitation of atmospheric CO2 concentrations to 500 ppm in the year 2095. We find that technology is even more important to reducing the costs of emissions mitigation when international policy structures deviate from immediate and full participation. We also find that the international diffusion of climate technology may be as or more important to domestic mitigation cost containment as domestic technology diffusion. We observe that near-term carbon prices reflect in a very direct way expectations about technology a half century and more into the future. We find that the policy architecture has a relatively modest effect on global emissions limitation pathways when compared with the impact of technology availability and observe that more rapid technology improvements reduce the relative influence of the policy architecture. Finally, we consider the implications combining CO2 capture and storage technology with bioenergy production, namely electricity production with negative carbon emissions.
By Jeffrey Frankel, James W. Harpel Professor of Capital Formation and Growth
Global environmental goals and trade goals can be reconciled. Globalization and multilateral institutions can facilitate environmental protection rather than obstruct it, if they are harnessed in the right way. Perhaps most urgent is that negotiators working on a sequel to the Kyoto Protocol agree on guidelines to govern precisely how individual countries can and cannot use trade measures in pursuit of carbon mitigation.
The advent of the Responsibility to Protect (RtoP) signals the international community’s commitment to ending genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and crimes against humanity, and serves as a declaration that state sovereignty will no longer be a shield behind which perpetrators of mass atrocities can hide. Despite achieving consensus for RtoP’s vision among UN member states in 2005, efforts to move RtoP from words to action have stalled.
At a crucial moment, this paper analyzes the challenges the international community faces in Afghanistan and finds that five problems have crippled the effort from the beginning – ambiguous objectives, poor coordination, a mismatch of goals and resources, unrealistic expectations about centralized institutions, and inattention to regional dynamics. The authors offer practical, actionable recommendations that will help the international community achieve a positive outcome in Afghanistan and the region.
By Hongyan He Oliver, Former Research Fellow, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2004-2009, Kelly Sims Gallagher, Senior Associate, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, Donglian Tian and Jinhua Zhang
This paper describes the Chinese experience in adopting fuel economy standards for vehicles. The lessons from China that are described in this paper can be highly relevant for countries that are experiencing or anticipating rapid growth in personal vehicles, those wishing to moderate an increase in oil demand, or those desirous of vehicle technology upgrades.
By Ziad Haider
Pakistan ’s regressive and receding tribal governance system has failed to secure the tribal peoples’ constitutional rights and the tribal belt at great domestic and international cost. As extremist elements, including the Taliban and Al Qaeda, gain strength and launch attacks in and beyond South Asia from the increasingly lawless and radicalized tribal areas, HKS MPP student Ziad Haider recommends that the following governance reforms must be introduced to avert a swelling of jihadi ranks, extend the state’s writ, and secure and mainstream these badlands.
January 14, 2009
By Jonas Meckling, Former Research Fellow, Geopolitics of Energy Project, 2010–2012; Harvard Project on Climate Agreements, 2009–2010; Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group, 2007–2009 and Gu Yoon Chung
This paper presents a study of sectoral approaches to climate change that have been gaining currency in the international debate as a possible remedy to the shortfalls of the Kyoto Protocol.
January 7, 2009
"Advancing Carbon Sequestration Research in an Uncertain Legal and Regulatory Environment: A Study of Phase II of the DOE Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnerships Program"
This paper examines the legal and regulatory barriers encountered in carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) research, development and demonstration (RD&D) projects under the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Regional Carbon Sequestration Partnerships Program.
Despite an enormous amount of work done to persuade the world of the dangers of climate change and the need for quick corrective action, there is little progress toward a global compact for managing climate change. In fact, there are some basic differences of perspectives on climate change policies between developed and developing countries which may bedevil future global agreements on climate change for quite some time. Among the reasons for these differences are the issues of historical responsibility for carbon emission by the developed countries, the need for lifestyle changes in both the developed and developing countries, suspicion in the developing countries about the motives of developed countries and too much focus of current discussions on the very long-term and global effects of climate change.