米温暖化対策 シェールガス革命が追い風に

The Yomiuri Shimbun July 4, 2013
Will shale gas revolution help combat global warming?
米温暖化対策 シェールガス革命が追い風に(7月3日付・読売社説)

U.S. President Barack Obama has announced an action plan to increase efforts to combat global warming.
 オバマ米大統領が、地球温暖化対策を強化する行動計画を発表した。

The sweeping plan is aimed at reducing carbon dioxide emissions in the United States, while also leading greater international efforts to combat climate change, particularly through cooperation with China and India, both major carbon dioxide emitters.
 国内で二酸化炭素(CO2)排出削減を進めるとともに、中国やインドなどとの協力を含めて国際的な温暖化対策を拡充する内容だ。

The world is witnessing a continuous increase in carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. Obama’s plan indicates the United States, the world’s second-worst greenhouse gas polluter after China, plans to seriously tackle global warming. This should significantly help international efforts to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
 CO2などの温室効果ガスの排出量は、世界で増加の一途をたどっている。中国に次ぐ排出大国の米国が温暖化対策に本腰を入れることは、世界全体の排出量削減の観点からも、意義は大きい。

However, Obama will be tested whether he will be able to demonstrate leadership in fighting global warming and what he can actually do to achieve his goal.
 オバマ氏の指導力と実行力が問われよう。

U.S. plan affirms target

The latest action plan reconfirms an earlier U.S. target for curtailing domestic greenhouse gas emissions by about 17 percent by the end of 2020, compared with 2005 levels. Measures include a plan to impose new and more rigorous emission regulations on existing and envisaged power plants.
 行動計画は、2020年までに温室効果ガス排出量を05年比17%程度削減する、という米国の中期目標を改めて確認している。

The action program also calls for switching to natural gases, an energy source that generates a smaller amount of carbon dioxide than coal and oil.
 国内のCO2排出削減対策として、新規及び既存の発電所に新たに厳しい規制を導入するほか、石炭や石油よりもクリーンな天然ガスへの切り替えを促した。

Obama’s plan incorporates the doubling of such renewable energy resources as hydroelectric and solar power. It also includes a plan to maintain and promote nuclear power generation through, for example, the development of small modular reactors with a generating capacity of less than 300,000 kilowatts per unit.
 水力や太陽光発電などの再生可能エネルギー倍増計画や、出力30万キロ・ワット以下の小型モジュラー炉の開発など原子力発電の維持・推進も盛り込んだ。

The outlook for Obama’s action plan is far from promising. In fact, U.S. electric power companies are already alarmed by the possible impact of his program. They fear that tightening the regulations may force them to close coal-fired power plants, which constitute the mainstay of their electricity business. The action plan is also opposed by Republicans and local governments that could be affected by the planned measures. They are concerned that the program would lead to a loss of many jobs. Many twists and turns are foreseen in a tug-of-war over how carbon dioxide emissions should be regulated at power plants.
 前途は容易ではあるまい。早くも電力会社は、厳しい規制で主力の石炭火力発電所が閉鎖に追い込まれかねないと警戒し、関連自治体や共和党も、雇用が奪われると反発を強めている。規制基準作りを巡り紆余(うよ)曲折が予想される。

A factor behind Obama’s decision to announce new anti-global warming measures is his desire to address the strong concerns of Americans about the increase in natural disasters due to abnormal weather in recent years, including violent storms and massive tornadoes. The action plan lays out specific measures to be implemented to enable local communities to deal more effectively with the impact of such disasters.
 オバマ氏が大胆な温暖化対策の推進を打ち出した背景の一つに、暴風雨や巨大竜巻など異常気象で災害が増加していることへの国民の強い関心がある。行動計画は、災害に耐性の強い地域作りへ具体策を講じることも明記した。

Another significant reason behind the president’s latest move is the fact that the recent increase in natural gas production due to the ongoing shale gas revolution is aiding his battle to reduce greenhouse gases. The U.S. carbon dioxide reduction goal seems to be increasingly realistic due to that country’s drive to shift from coal to natural gas. This is certain to shore up the U.S. position in global negotiations over reducing carbon dioxide emissions.
 シェールガス革命による天然ガス生産の増大が追い風になった点も見過ごせない。石炭から天然ガスへの転換で、CO2削減目標の達成は現実味を帯びてきた。国際交渉で米国の立場も強まろう。

The post-Kyoto Protocol framework is scheduled to take effect in 2020. The primary task facing participants is to ensure that their battle against global warming functions in a manner in which all major carbon dioxide emitters fulfill their share of responsibility in achieving their goals.
 京都議定書後の新たな国際枠組みは20年発効予定だ。すべての主要排出国が応分の責任を負う仕組みにすることが何より重要だ。

Japan role important

The Obama administration will likely seek to lay down a set of loosely defined rules by which each country will set its own reduction target and strive to curtail its carbon dioxide emissions, according to observers. This approach can be regarded as a persuasive method to get newly emerging nations to join the new framework, as they are opposed to reduction obligations that would be imposed on them.
 オバマ政権は、各国が自主的に目標を設定し、削減に努める緩やかなルール作りを目指すと見られる。削減義務を負うことに反発する新興国を引き入れるには、有効な手法と言える。

Japan should play an active role in this respect.
 日本も積極的に関与したい。

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government has said it will scrap an unrealistic carbon dioxide reduction target abruptly announced by then Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama in 2009. Hatoyama’s plan required this country to achieve a 25 percent reduction from 1990 levels in carbon dioxide emissions by the end of 2020.
 安倍政権は、鳩山元首相が09年に唐突に打ち出した「20年までに1990年比25%削減」という非現実的な目標の撤回を表明している。

It is essential for the Abe administration to replace the 2009 reduction plan with a practical reduction target that would take the nation’s economic activities into consideration, a task that must be complemented by efforts to gain support from other nations for the prime minister’s initiative.
まずは経済活動に目配りした現実的な目標に改め、国際社会の理解を得ていくことが肝要だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, July 3, 2013)
(2013年7月3日01時53分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-07-05 06:48 | 英字新聞

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