India at G8: Poverty Alleviation is First; Green House Emission Can Wait
There have been a lot of talks at various times during G8 meet in Hokkaido, Japan on the issue of reduction of Green House Emissions (GHE). In bipartite and joint discussions, developed countries suggested targets for reduction of GHE. Requests were made to the developing countries, particularly China, India, Brazil, Indonesia, South Africa, South Korea to put in place mechanisms to reduce GHE to achieve preset targets in a given time frame. G8 nations generally agreed on a target of reduction of GHE by 50% (from the 1990 levels) by the year 2050.
The G5 group consisting of China, India,Brazil, Mexico and South Africa, the major developing economies, contrarily put pressure on developed economies to take lead in achieving ambitious cut in GHE and pointed it out as their 'Historical Responsibility' (meaning that they were responsible for main part of GHE as their industrialisation and lifestyle changes have taken place much earlier). G5 even gave a volume and time target.
Speaking on the issue on 9th July, the Indian Prime Minister Dr.Manmohan Singh said that it was not possible for the developing economies to put quantitative restrictions on earth warming GRE. Singh also pointed out that issue of climate change should not be used to maintain economic status quo or to add to challenges already faced by developing countries.
In an interventional speech at the meeting of 16 major economies, Dr. Singh said, “GRE issue should not be used to add conditionality to the existing complex developmental challenges of developing countries. Poverty eradication was first and overriding priority for all developing nations. More than 600 million people in India does not have access to modern energy sources and a quarter of our population lives on less than a dollar a day earnings.”
He further added, “Sustained and accelerated economic growth is critical for developing countries and no quantitative restrictions on our emissions can be considered for the present.”
Putting pressure on the developed nations to do more themselves, Singh further added, “We have not seen demonstrable progress on even low levels of agreed GRE reduction from developed countries…….and their emissions (of Green house Gases) as a whole will continue to rise in the years to come.”
In the concluding joint declaration by leaders of 16 nations, the necessity of ‘deep cut’ in global emission was recognized to tackle climate changes but no specific volume and time targets were articulated.
Tags: G8 , Japan , India , Green House Emission , Poverty
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