Under attack for its climate policy for Copenhagen summit, Government today said India will not accept any legal binding on emission cut and rejected any proposal that would put a cap on the carbon emission.
Days before leaving for the Copenhagen summit which began in the Danish capital today, Environment and Forests Minister Jairam Ramesh said, “Under no circumstances, we will accept any draft which suggests that India’s emissions should peak by 2025, 2030 … This is simply not on our agenda”.
Replying to queries from members in the Rajya Sabha, he said India would not accept the same level of international scrutiny for the country’s unsupported carbon mitigation action though it can do so for the plans supported by global funding and technology.
“Wherever the world supports us in terms of finance and technology, they can come and verify what we are doing. But where you (developed world) are not supporting us… we will not support these actions to international scrutiny”, he said.
Ramesh, who is blamed by opposition for opening the country’s negotiating cards before going to the summit, said, “We will under no circumstances accept a legally binding emission reduction cut.”
He had last week announced in the Lok Sabha that India would unilaterally cut carbon intensity level by 20-25 per cent by 2020. His announcement came in for sharp criticism from the BJP and the Left parties.
Justifying the announcement, Ramesh said this was a unilateral domestic obligation that the country had taken on its own interest and tell the world that “if you want us to reflect it internationally, you have to support us both in terms of finance and technology”.
Asserting that he has nothing to hide and was being transparent, he assured the House that the proposal did not mean international monitoring, reporting and verification of unsupported actions.
“I am trying to come clean as much as I can. I am not trying to hide anything”, he said.
Disagreeing with Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitley that India’s unveiling its plan would weaken its negotiating position in the summit, Ramesh said, “Every major country in the world has a major offer on the table.
“We also have an offer on the table. But under no circumstances, our per capita emission should exceed the emissions of the developed world” and this too was non-legally binding offer.
He said it strengthened country’s negotiating position to demand greater cuts from the West and denied that the plan was made under any foreign pressure.
On fears that the commitment of 20-25 emission cut would lead to denial of electricity to the masses, Ramesh said, “If this emerges as a constraint, we will re-look it.”