India on Thursday made it clear that it cannot accept any emission reduction targets in the climate change negotiations heading for a climax in Copenhagen later this year, but expressed the hope that there would be consensus on financing emission control programmes in developing countries aided by technology transfer.
New Delhi also rejected the possibility of phasing out subsidies on energy pricing saying while it was an objective it would not be implemented at the cost of poor people.
India’s position was enunciated on the sidelines of the G20 summit here by the Prime Minister’s Special Envoy on Climate Change, Shyam Saran, who attended the just concluded conference in the United Nations and the Major Economies Forum last week in Washington.
“We will not be able to undertake emission reduction targets of the kind the developed countries are obliged to take under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. However, it is not that India is not taking mitigation action,” Mr. Saran told reporters.
Mr. Saran also rejected suggestions that India was phasing demands or threats to undertake emission reduction targets. In fact, there is recognition that India was doing its best to contain carbon emissions and also taking up programmes for encouraging production of green energy through various methods.
Mr. Saran said the G20 summit was not a negotiating forum for discussing climate change issues which is expected to be thrashed out in the Copenhagen Summit in December.
“The sole negotiating forum for climate change is the UNFCCC. Nevertheless, a strong political message from the G20 leaders that they are committed to a comprehensive, balanced and above all an equitable outcome in Copenhagen, would have favourably impact on the negotiations,” the special envoy said.
Mr. Saran said the Major Economies Forum meeting in Washington agreed that there was need to place greater emphasis than hitherto on adaptation to climate change by developing countries for which both financial resources and technology transfers would be required.
It was also felt that emphasis should be on energy efficiency, solar energy, wind power, smart grids, carbon capture and storage and clean coal technologies.
Replying to questions whether India would undertake reduction of subsidies on energy pricing and whether a timeframe could be set for that, he said while as a policy, rationalisation of energy pricing was certainly welcome, the government can’t take measures that could harm the poor 400 million who do not have access to energy.
Keywords: emission reduction targets, climate change, Copenhagen, emission control programmes, developing countries, technology transfer, subsidies, energy pricing, Prime Minister’s Special Envoy on Climate Change, Shyam Saran, United Nations