Kyoto Protocol


The Kyoto Protocol is an international treaty which extends the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change that commits state parties to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, based on the scientific consensus that global warming is occurring and it is extremely likely that human-made CO2 emissions have predominantly caused it. The Kyoto Protocol was adopted in Kyoto, Japan on 11 December 1997 and entered into force on 16 February 2005. There are currently 192 parties to the Protocol.

Kyoto Protocol

What is ‘Kyoto Protocol’

An international agreement that aims to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and the presence of greenhouse gases. Countries that ratify the Kyoto Protocol are assigned maximum carbon emission levels and can participate in carbon credit trading. Emitting more than the assigned limit will result in a penalty for the violating country in the form of a lower emission limit in the following period.

Explaining ‘Kyoto Protocol’

The Kyoto Protocol separates countries into two groups. Annex I includes developed nations, while Non-Annex I refers to developing countries. Emission limitations are only placed on Annex I countries. Non-Annex I nations participate by investing in projects that lower emissions in their own countries. For these projects, they earn carbon credits. These credits can be traded or sold to Annex I countries, which allow them a higher level of maximum carbon emissions for that period.

Further Reading

  • Kyoto protocol implementation in Serbia as precognition of sustainable energetic and economic development – [PDF]
  • Latin American forest plantations: opportunities for carbon sequestration, economic development, and financial returns – [PDF]
  • Maximizing financial support for biodiversity in the emerging Kyoto protocol markets – [PDF]
  • Compliance of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol in the first commitment period – [PDF]
  • Fulfilling the Kyoto protocol in Spain: A matter of economic crisis or environmental policies? – [PDF]
  • Developing countries and the future of the Kyoto Protocol – [PDF]
  • The Kyoto Protocol and developing countries – [PDF]