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India, others resist emission diktat

India and other developing countries today signalled that they would resist any "obligatory review mechanism" intended to increase their individual efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions warming the planet.

By Our Special Correspondent
  • Published 16.09.15
  •  

New Delhi, Sept. 15: India and other developing countries today signalled that they would resist any "obligatory review mechanism" intended to increase their individual efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions warming the planet.

Climate change negotiators from the so-called like-minded developing countries (LMDC), concluding a two-day meeting hosted by India, said any review of actions to curb greenhouse gas emissions should factor in the differential responsibilities of developed and developing countries. In a joint statement, the negotiators said the LMDCs have expressed "strong reservations" against any obligatory review mechanism to increase individual efforts of developing countries.

The LMDC meeting comes ahead of a UN conference on climate change later this year in Paris where over 190 countries are expected to finalise a global pact that scientists and policy makers say is intended to limit global warming to less than 2°C over the next century.

Developing countries have repeatedly called on developed countries that have been responsible for large historic emissions to commit themselves to sharp cuts in their emissions. But developed countries want large developing economies such as India and China to also commit themselves to emissions reductions.

All countries are expected to submit their intended nationally-determined contributions (INDCs), outlining actions to be taken to curb greenhouse gas emissions. Several countries, including the US and China have released their INDCs, and India is expected to announce its intended actions later this month.

"All countries have decided to take action, but that action is voluntary and nationally determined, not internationally determined," India's environment and forests minister Prakash Javadekar said addressing the negotiators this afternoon.

"Paris can become a festival if the world accepts this scenario - all countries take action, whatever is possible with their resources," Javadekar said.

"If we welcome everybody's nationally-determined actions, without criticising each other and without entering into a blame game, Paris will be successful."

The LMDCs have also asked the developed countries to provide "additional, predictable, and sustainable climate finance" to help developing countries enhance their climate actions to cover the period up to 2020 and beyond.

Under pacts agreed during earlier climate change conferences, the developed countries had agreed to support developing countries' actions through finance and technology.

"It is important for the developing countries to present a coherent voice to resist pressure from the developed countries," a negotiator from an Asian country told The Telegraph on the sidelines of the closed-door LMDC meeting in Delhi.

The LMDCs in their joint statement said the Paris agreement should ensure the provision for adequate support by developed countries to developing countries to adapt to climate change and to respond to loss and damage associated with the adverse effects of climate change.

Scientific studies show that extreme weather events are likely to increase in frequency in a warming world. Javadekar expressed his unhappiness with what he said was "double-speak" by the developed countries.

"In loss and damage, there is double speak," he said. "When a hurricane happens, they see the gravity of climate change, when some country asks for loss and damage on that account, they come out with the logic that one has to prove whether it is climate change event or a natural event - when compensation is to be paid, it is a natural event, when there is no claim then it becomes a climate change event."