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India opposes financing proposal to contain greenhouse emissions

India opposes financing proposal to contain greenhouse emissions
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First Published: Tue, Aug 18 2009. 12 37 AM IST

 Different stands: India, along with China, South Africa and Brazil, has opposed the three papers presented by the UK that essentially propose that each of the G-20 nations funds its own efforts to co
Different stands: India, along with China, South Africa and Brazil, has opposed the three papers presented by the UK that essentially propose that each of the G-20 nations funds its own efforts to co
Updated: Tue, Aug 18 2009. 12 37 AM IST
New Delhi: India, along with China, South Africa and Brazil, has opposed a new financing proposal to contain greenhouse gas emissions that was presented to the G-20 group of nations at a United Nations (UN) conference on climate change held in Bonn last week.
Different stands: India, along with China, South Africa and Brazil, has opposed the three papers presented by the UK that essentially propose that each of the G-20 nations funds its own efforts to control climate change. Stockxpert
The UK, which currently chairs the grouping, presented three papers that essentially propose that each of the G-20 nations funds its own efforts to control climate change. The G-20 is a group of the world’s 19 major economies plus the European Union.
This is the latest in a series of efforts by developed countries to take up discussions outside the UN forum and India has been involved in this, Mint reported on 12 August. India is finding it tough to keep the several negotiation fronts open as the battle to reach a global climate deal by December hits fever pitch.
“Yet another new front has been opened in the climate discussions, seeking to move decisions and agreements away from the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) to rich country clubs,” a government official said on condition of anonymity.
The new proposal goes against the stated stands of emerging economies such as India and China that developed countries need to fund efforts to mitigate the effects of greenhouse gases.
China and India have both estimated that the developed world needs to set aside 1% of its GDP for developing nations, if it wants them to undertake any emission cuts that includes incurring major costs to substitute older technologies with newer ones.
“The papers take a very non-UN framework view of finance and essentially say that each country has to take care of its own costs,” the official said.
India, on its part, presented a financing framework suggested by the G-77 nations, a group that comprises the developing countries and China. This view says that financing for climate change should be determined in the context of the UNFCCC and not the G-20.
The G-77 paper suggests that there would be no uncompensated mitigation for any developing nation and recommends applying this principle to technology transfers and adaptation. It proposes an international UN-managed fund to this end. “The G-77 paper was presented as the G-20 papers represented only one extreme view,” the official added.
Among the several issues that emerging economies have opposed to combat climate change is that for national developmental plans being open to international scrutiny. The Bali Action Plan, which lists the main elements of a global deal under the UN framework, says that mitigation actions in developing nations will be open to verification and reporting only if their costs are financed by the developed world, which will also be verifiable and reportable.
The new G-20 proposal suggests that all national plans, such as the Five-Year Plans for India, would be open to international scrutiny, which it has opposed vehemently.
The G-20 has sought responses on its papers next week and would then prepare a paper for a meet in September in London and subsequently for the G-20 summit in Pittsburgh, US, in November.
“The papers follow the development paradigm exactly and treat climate financing as another aid window, disregarding the alternative paradigm in the UN convention,” said Prodipto Ghosh, a former environment secretary and part of the Indian climate change delegation. He clarified that the current development paradigm mandates that the amount of aid and to whom it is provided is at the discretion of donor countries.
Climate change financing, which sets the terms of which countries will pay what to mitigate climate change and how the funds should flow, is one of the key issues being debated in the UNFCCC.
The three papers deal with both public and private finance, which is the carbon market. The official said that initially the emerging economies in the G-20 attempted to change the way the papers were worded but later decided that these would need to be rewritten before further discussion.
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First Published: Tue, Aug 18 2009. 12 37 AM IST