India Committed to Fight Against Climate Change: Javadekar

Mythili Sampathkumar/Lima
India Committed to Fight Against Climate Change: Javadekar

India today expressed confidence that negotiators at the UN Climate Change Summit here could put in place the stepping stones towards a post­2020 deal under a comprehensive, balanced, equitable and pragmatic Convention that will address the genuine needs of developing nations.

Speaking at the High Level Segment of UNFCCC COP-20 at Lima, Minister for Environment, Forests and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar said India is committed and ready to play its part in the global fight against climate change.

"We are pursuing action-oriented policies to bring rapid development to our people while purposefully addressing climate change...We have shown that we have the vision and the political will to act," he said.

"Our ambition in the post-2020 period is directly linked with ambitious actions in the pre-2020 period by the developed countries, otherwise the poor people in developing countries will not get the carbon space to achieve sustainable development," he said.

Noting that the number of poor people in the world is more than twice the combined population of Europe and all of them are in developing countries, he said, "We are determined to ensure development to all these people and provide them with basic services of energy, water, sanitation, healthcare, education and employment."

"We in India are committed to protecting the interests of the poor. We did in it WTO for ensuring food security of our people," he said, adding that the success of India's endeavors in all these issues will also be critical for the success of the global efforts for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

"Despite our serious resource constraints, we are undertaking ambitious actions to undertake adaptation and mitigation actions, including through lowering of the energy intensity of our economic growth, increasing energy efficiency across sectors and making greater use of renewables," he said. 

"We hope to put in place in Lima, the stepping stones towards a post-2020 agreement under the Convention that is comprehensive, balanced, equitable and pragmatic," Javadekar said, adding that it should be able to address the genuine requirements of the developing countries by providing them equitable carbon space to achieve sustainable development.

Adherence to the principles and provisions of the Convention is the key, he added.

"It is equally evident that developing countries could do more if finance, technology support and capacity building is ensured. This must be a key focus of the new agreement," said the minister, who is leading the Indian delegation.

"If we believe that the global warming threat is real, then we must deliver on the agreed commitments as a matter of priority," he said.

"We hope to achieve a positive outcome which will set us on the path to an ambitious, comprehensive and equitable agreement at Paris next year," he added.

Javadekar met the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and US Special Envoy for Climate Change Todd Stern among others.

He also met with the leaders of Australia, Germany and France and attended a dinner with the Like Minded Developing Country group.

Javadekar told Ban that though India is "positively engaged" in the draft text negotiations, it did not want parties to operate "as if this is the last opportunity," noting that there is an entire year before Paris.

He said though finance commitment announcements seemed to be a positive highlight from the first days of the Lima talks last week, it is "not a happy story" as much anymore.

India is still pushing for financial commitments that fit into the Convention mandate that they be "new, additional, and predictable," which is not always the case with the latest country commitments.

In his remarks, the minister said that "developing countries are allocating significant portions of their scarce national resources on adaptation, which remains an immediate and urgent global priority."

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