PMO discusses climate change

Published: Friday 15 June 2007

climate change was the main item of discussion in a meeting convened by the prime minister's office. The May 16 meet focussed on maintaining the current economic growth while cutting down on greenhouse gases. The meeting also came at a time when there is pressure on developing countries to accept mandatory emission caps in the post Kyoto agreements. But this development did not figure in the deliberations.

"The meeting took stock of the predicted effects of climate change on India and the country's energy and growth situation," said Sanjay Baru, media advisor to the prime minister. Baru said that the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (ipcc), R K Pachauri, has been asked to prepare a report on the challenges that India faces to maintain its growth rate in an ecologically sustainable manner. Pachauri is expected to present the report in six months.Baru maintained that India's international position regarding climate change was based on fairness and equity.

There was no discussion on how to work on the solutions and improve clean development mechanism--an arrangement under the Kyoto Protocol allowing developed countries to invest in emission reducing projects in developing countries. "Pachauri's report will focus on low carbon growth strategies for India. After it is out, future strategies will be decided upon," Baru added.

However, some say the lack of discussion on India's position on global warming and strategies to counter international pressure, is worrisome. More so, because India will be facing these issues at the g8 summit in Germany. "If this was not discussed, then it is very unfortunate," said former environment minister Suresh Prabhu.

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