Jairam predicts problems for climate change negotiators | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Jairam predicts problems for climate change negotiators

Environment and Forest Minister Jairam Ramesh foresees hurdles emerging for India’s climate change negotiators if rich countries use the Major Economic Forum (MEF) declaration to push developing countries to accept an emission cap.

delhi Updated: Aug 01, 2009 01:02 IST
Chetan Chauhan

Environment and Forest Minister Jairam Ramesh foresees hurdles emerging for India’s climate change negotiators if rich countries use the Major Economic Forum (MEF) declaration to push developing countries to accept an emission cap.

The declaration, which India had signed at the G-8 summit in Italy in the first week of July, allows a 2-degree Celsius rise in temperatures by 2050.

However, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who signed the declaration in Italy, had told the Lok Sabha earlier this week that the 2-degree increase was an “aspirational” target.

Singh said it reflected a prevalent “scientific opinion internationally” and that the seriousness of global warming “does not automatically translate into compulsion on the part of India or other developing countries to accept emission reduction targets”.

Ramesh, on the other hand, said, “The 2-degree thing is new for negotiations. We would have problems if it (MEF declaration) is used as a scaffolding against our negotiators.”

Ramesh said this while releasing Indian submissions to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) on Friday.

Asked how an agreement was reached on the 2-degree target, Ramesh said it would be unfair to ask him as he was not present at the G-8 summit.

“To me, it is not a guideline for climate change negotiations. I will reiterate that India will not accept any legally binding emission cap,” the minister said.