Last week, an official Chinese think-tank surprised the world by estimating that with the right low-carbon technology China could control its carbon emissions to peak at 2030 and fall to 2005 levels or lower by 2050.
Now India wants to know how, and will nudge China for details. On Monday, a team led by Indian Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh will huddle in a three-hour meeting in Beijing to discuss climate change.
India and China are at the centre of global negotiations to finalise a successor to the Kyoto Protocol and get nations to agree to limit heat-trapping greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global warming.
“The West is trying to play India and China against each other and trying to isolate India and China,’’ Ramesh told HT in Beijing ahead of the talks. “China is trying to collaborate with the US and so are we. The engagement is bilateral but negotiations are multilateral.’’
India will ask for details on China’s recent deal with the US for joint research on clean energy. “The emission gap between India and China is very large,’’ he said. “Even so, our positions have converged. This meeting is the PM’s way of signalling that we’re in the same boat.”
India aims to study how China is increasing its forest cover by over five times the annual rate in India. The two nations will sign a collaboration to exchange data and field visits on the shrinking Himalayan glaciers. Getting Chinese field data and access for glacier studies has been strategically difficult. The minister called it a ‘big breakthrough’.