Global Warming Gridlock

Global Warming Gridlock : Creating More Effective Strategies for Protecting the Planet

3.83 (18 ratings by Goodreads)
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Global warming is one of today's greatest challenges. The science of climate change leaves no doubt that policies to cut emissions are overdue. Yet, after twenty years of international talks and treaties, the world is now in gridlock about how best to do this. David G. Victor argues that such gridlock has arisen because international talks have drifted away from the reality of what countries are willing and able to implement at home. Most of the lessons that policy makers have drawn from the history of other international environmental problems won't actually work on the problem of global warming. Victor argues that a radical rethinking of global warming policy is required and shows how to make international law on global warming more effective. This book provides a roadmap to a lower carbon future based on encouraging bottom-up initiatives at national, regional and global levels, leveraging national self-interest rather than wishful thinking.
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Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • 15 b/w illus. 3 tables
  • 113903927X
  • 9781139039277

Review quote

'Uncertainty over global climate negotiations is impeding investment into the low-carbon economy. But policy gridlock is not inevitable. In his lucidly argued and timely new book, David Victor gives a pragmatic roadmap to help policymakers navigate their way around the current climate impasse.' Lord John Browne, Partner, Riverstone Holdings LLC and former CEO, BP Plc 'David Victor's voice on how to do successful climate diplomacy and policy is one of the most distinctive in today's world. It is a voice that needs to be listened to. Global Warming Gridlock exposes the myths, failures and naiveties of two decades of climate diplomacy. No prisoners are taken - diplomats, scientists, campaigners and engineers alike are placed in the firing line. Instead, and drawing upon his own profound analysis and experience of international environmental law, diplomacy and policy, Victor presents a convincing case for a pragmatic, incremental and credible approach to climate policy, in stark contrast to the idealistic, radical and incredible approach which has so feebly failed. [This book] adds its voice to the 'new realism' surrounding climate change science, discourse, politics and policy which is gaining important momentum following the scientific and diplomatic debacles of 2009/10.' Mike Hulme, Professor of Climate Change, University of East Anglia 'In Global Warming Gridlock, David Victor combines a devastating critique of the prevailing UN-based process with a politically sophisticated argument for an alternative strategy based on climate clubs and deals. To understand the politics of climate change, read this book!' Robert O. Keohane, Professor of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University 'The book covers a vast and in depth landscape of diplomatic history and is written in a compelling and engaging style. I particularly welcome Victor's focus on the need for better strategies to engage with emerging economies, such as India, that are making serious proactive contributions to mitigation, and adaptation, demonstrating that while they have not caused the problem, they will be part of the solution. His analysis takes to task the existing diplomatic process, which he argues has not been designed with the needs of emerging countries in mind.' Jairam Ramesh, Minister of State (Independent Charge), Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India 'I cannot claim to have read all the books on global warming and climate change, but I've read enough, in the thirty years that I have been studying the subject, to assure you that it is exceedingly unlikely that there's another one out there that is as good, let alone better, than David Victor's. He is up to date on the science; he has more than two decades of experience in policy-making, especially international environmental policy-making; he is patient and fair-minded; and he writes in plain English. If you want to know what book to read, this one is it.' Thomas C. Schelling, Nobel Laureate in Economics, University of Maryland 'A sophisticated analysis of the effects of global warming.' The Economist 'Global Warming Gridlock brings together a wealth of comprehensive analysis, which has in its crosshairs the conventional wisdom that has straitjacketed both national and international efforts at dealing with climate change ... In a landscape littered with a multitude of commentary on what has gone wrong after two decades of international efforts to address climate change, and no shortage of proposals on how to rectify this, Victor's work is a standout contribution: melding the economics and politics, moving between the domestic and international, and robustly challenging assumptions about how we might move towards a low-carbon future.' Nick Chan, e-International Relations (
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Table of contents

List of figures; List of tables; Preface and acknowledgements; Hard truths on global warming: a roadmap to reading this book; Part I. Setting the Scene: 1. Introduction and overview; 2. Why global warming is such a difficult problem to solve; Part II. The Three Dimensions to Climate Policy Strategy: 3. Regulating emissions part 1: the enthusiastic countries; 4. Regulating emissions part 2: engaging reluctant developing countries; 5. Promoting technological innovation; 6. Preparing for a changing climate: adaptation, geoengineering and triage; Part III. Putting it All Together: 7. Explaining diplomatic gridlock: what went wrong?; 8. A new strategy; 9. Climate change and world order: implications for the UN, government, industry and nature; Bibliography; Notes; Index.
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Rating details

18 ratings
3.83 out of 5 stars
5 22% (4)
4 44% (8)
3 28% (5)
2 6% (1)
1 0% (0)
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