THE GERMAN minister for environment, nature protection and reactor safety, Klaus Topfer, is among those who blame the West for a major role in polluting the earth. Or, so he was at pains to establish during a recent visit to India. "The industrialised countries must make a conscientous effort," he said, " to share the costs of tackling the environmental problems of the developing countries."
Topfer agreed during meetings with the Indian minister for environment and forests Kamal Nath to provide financial and technical assistance to clean up the Damodar river and to reforest the ecologically ravaged Doon and Kangra regions. Topfer also offered German help to tackle increasing urban pollution levels in India but, ironically, the environment ministry could not suggest any plan that could immediately avail of the Topfer offer.
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