UNDER THE KYOTO Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), industrialized countries committed to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by an average of minus 5.2 percent relative to their 1990 level emissions by 2008–12. To assist countries in attaining these reduction targets, the protocol created three flexible mechanisms. These mechanisms allow countries with reduction commitments to achieve their targets by acquiring credits from emissions reduced or avoided in other countries, where it may be more cost-effective to do so. The three mechanisms of the Kyoto Protocol are: Emissions Trading, Joint Implementation, and the Clean Development Mechanism. In this way, a country or a private or public entity within a country that reduces or avoids emissions more than it is required, may ...

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