Many today feel that most urgent problems can only be solved by international cooperation.
To what extent do you agree or disagree?
There are those who claim that we can only solve pressing global issues today if countries work in concert. In my opinion, international cooperation holds some promise but it is difficult to align the priorities of self-interested nations.
Proponents argue that global issues require active participation from all countries. The best, most recent example of this is climate change. Threats to the environment are becoming more dire annually and this affects every nation on Earth equally. Therefore, the best solutions involve signing international accords. These agreements force nations to abide by certain regulations and meet benchmarks in order to form a cohesive, global policy that can mitigate and reverse the effects of climate change. If many governments are unwilling to commit, it is unlikely that individual nations will then have the desire to make drastic changes and very little might be done to curb an imminent global catastrophe.
However, the accords mentioned above have been notorious failures as each nation has its own individual priorities. Many developed nations that already have well-developed green industries and eco-friendly policies in place are happy to sign agreements that benefit both the Earth and their own financial interests. Other nations, chiefly in the Middle East where their economies are reliant on fossil fuel production and in developing countries where the economic consequences would be dire, are less enthusiastic. Many poorer countries can also justly argue that they contributed little to the current climate problems in the past so it is unfair to hinder their development now. This applies for issues outside climate change as nations will always be in conflict and international cooperation is therefore an impractical solution to important problems.
In conclusion, though the entire planet working in tandem would be an ideal approach, it will typically fail due to competing interests. It is more important that countries act on their own or with like-minded nations and not push for global reforms.