India’s main challenge at the Cancun climate summit is to try and bring the US — the world’s second largest carbon emitter — on board with the emerging economies in tackling climate change. And to do this, it is willing to open itself up to international verification of its domestic mitigation measures.
Before leaving for Mexico, environment minister Jairam Ramesh told HT his mandate was to “play a bridge” between the US and the others. He said any climate deal without the US on board would not be worth it and exhorted America to improve its offer of a 14% emission reduction target by 2020.
India will also allow verification of its domestic mitigation pledge — which is to reduce emission intensity for a unit of GDP by 20-25% by 2010 — a big deviation from its stand at the 2009 Copenhagen summit.
Ramesh has a a proposal that experts say has enough to appease US climate negotiators. “I have proposed that for all countries that have emissions equivalent to or more than 1% of the global average and that are also major emitters, the frequency of measurement, review and verification (MRV) should be once in three years and for others, once in six years," he said. India and China’s emissions are more than 1%.
His second proposal, he said, was on tech transfer from rich to poor nations. “Unless technology transfer takes place,
we won’t agree on an MRV regime,” he said.