LBL Research Review August 1994

INDUSTRIAL NATIONS CURRENTLY EMIT THE LION'S SHARE of greenhouse gases into the Earth's atmosphere, but developing nations soon will displace them. By 2025, projected carbon dioxide emissions from developing countries will more than double the emissions of North America and quadruple those of Western Europe.

To confront the global consequences of this trend, representatives of 16 developing nations convened at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory June 13-24. Here, they began an analytical effort to identify how to minimize emissions and reduce the potential for global warming.

Nations participating in the LBL workshop included Russia, Mongolia, Bulgaria, Poland, the Czech Republic, Kazakhastan, South Korea, Egypt, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, Gambia, Mexico, Venezuela, Chile, and Peru.

The workshop was an outgrowth of the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio. All participating countries signed an agreement to inventory their current emissions, identifying both emission sources and sinks. (Sinks, which include things such as plants, remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.)

To assist the participating countries, the U.S. government has agreed to provide funding for analysis as well as technical assistance led by LBL's Energy Analysis Program and a team of U.S. institutions. LBL project co-leader Jayant Sathaye describes the workshop as an unprecedented international training exercise. "Country studies of this magnitude have never been done, either in terms of the scope of the training program or the nature of the project itself," he says. The U.S. hopes that these studies, scheduled for completion in 1996, will evolve into comprehensive national action plans by participating countries.

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