Ethiopia should understand that climate agreements such as the Paris Agreement are designed and doomed to fail. That is why Ethiopia should avoid a carbon tax, another form of financial aid, a poverty trap; Instead, it should plan how to live with the inevitable overall increase in atmospheric CO2 concentration. The same is true for the majority of least developed countries (LDCs). During our visit, an Icelandic company announced an agreement with the Ethiopian government to produce 1,000 megawatts of geothermal reserves near the town of Shashemene in southern Ethiopia. Developer Reykjavic Geothermal plans to invest $4 billion in the project and has signed the first power purchase contract in Ethiopia`s history. Donald Trump`s June 1 decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement has been widely denounced as misinformed by leaders, scientists and supporters around the world. Many believe that this decision will significantly compromise our ability to succeed in this global effort to limit the impact of carbon emissions on global warming. This study argues that, in principle, Ethiopia should agree with the world in international climate change agreements (such as the Paris Climate Agreement) with the sole aim of avoiding political and economic sanctions from “pro-terrestrial” nations and institutions; However, it should avoid becoming carbon neutral at the expense of costs and the slowdown in its industrial development prospects. Given that CO2 (energy consumption) emissions are directly correlated with economic prosperity and industrialization (see Table 1 and Chart 1), Ethiopia should plan to increase its CO2 emissions per capita as much as possible. To date, 134 countries have ratified this international agreement. The Paris Agreement was adopted in December 2015, with the support of more than 190 states, at COP21, making it the first universal agreement on climate change. This agreement was made possible by a new and very important national law, which allows private developers to produce and sell electricity to Ethiopian electricity suppliers.
On the same day, the heads of state and government from around the world gathered at the United Nations in New York to sign a historic climate agreement, my family and I found ourselves facing a tiny solar energy enthusiast on a dusty, dirty road in southern Ethiopia. Ethiopia contributes only 0.35% of global CO2 emissions, so its efforts to reduce national emissions by 64% below a status quo by 2030 seem in many ways negligible. However, Ethiopia deserves the world`s attention not because of all the megatonnes of greenhouse gases it plans to mitigate, but because of the country`s commitment to building a system that is not only economically prosperous and carbon-neutral, but economically prosperous because it is carbon neutral.