Noting that the world was on the move to tackle climate change, UN Chief Ban Ki-moon has acknowledged India’s commitment to use renewable energy in its effort to cut down carbon emissions.
“Each week brings new commitments and pledges - from industrialised countries, emerging economies, and developing countries alike... India has strong plans for renewable energy and energy efficiency,” Mr. Ban said at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Trinidad and Tobago.
The Secretary-General is at Port of Spain to provide momentum for Climate Change at the last political gathering before the upcoming Copenhagen Climate Change Conference.
It is anticipated that these political commitments would then be worked into a binding treaty within six months that succeed the Kyoto Protocol.
Mr. Ban also highlighted that Brazil, Indonesia and South Korea recently announced voluntary plans to significantly reduce emissions, and Russia has also increased its mid-term target in this aspect.
China has announced its intention to reduce “carbon intensity” by 40 to 45 per cent by 2020 against a 2005 level, while the US would offer to cut missions by 17 per cent on 2005 figures by 2020 at the conference.
The UN chief called on the leaders to attend the climate conference at Copenhagen.
“Some 80 world leaders have now pledged to attend the Summit. More are signing up daily. I urge you to accept his (Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen) invitation to come to Copenhagen for the final days of this critical conference,” he said.
Meanwhile, French Prime Minister Nicholas Sarkozy, who attended a luncheon meeting with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, said he was “fully confident” of the Indian Prime Minister’s attendance at the Climate Summit.
“India has nothing to lose and everything to gain by being in Copenhagen. If India is to be heard, it needs to be present,” Mr. Sarkozy said.
As of now, the Prime Minister has not announced his plans to attend the conference.
Mr. Ban stressed that the Copenhagen Summit must “achieve a firm foundation for a legally binding climate treaty as early as possible in 2010.
“We cannot afford to fail. The costs are simply too great. Increased human suffering, higher economic losses, opportunities squandered in terms of productivity, global competitiveness and political stability,” he said.
The UN chief also met with the leaders of the Least Developed Countries and Small Island Nations which face threat from rising sea levels.