India’s Environment minister, Harsh Vardhan, described the principles that guide India’s stand at climate negotiations at a conference on Saturday.((PTI File Photo))
India’s Environment minister, Harsh Vardhan, described the principles that guide India’s stand at climate negotiations at a conference on Saturday.((PTI File Photo))

Environment minister sets the tone for India’s stand at Bonn climate talks

The Bonn climate talks are scheduled to start on November 6. It is the first time the member countries who signed the Paris agreement are meeting after US announced it would withdraw from the agreement.
PUBLISHED ON NOV 05, 2017 03:07 PM IST

“People in the developing world who are least responsible for causing the problem of climate change are most likely to suffer,” Harsh Vardhan, India’s environment minister, said on the eve of the Bonn climate talks starting November 6, setting the tone for the Indian delegation.

He was speaking at the second day of the World Conference on Environment 2017 in Delhi. The two-day conference (Nov 3-4) was organised by the National Green Tribunal, India’s top environment court, in collaboration with United Nations Environment Programme, the Asian Development Bank, the Ministry of Environment and Forests and the Ministry of Water Resources.

The Conference of Parties (COP)-23 being held in Germany, is the second such gathering of world leaders after the signing of the Paris climate agreement at COP 21 in 2015, and the first since the US announced plans to withdraw.

The Bonn conference is the platform where the rulebook of the Paris agreement will be negotiated. The minister’s comments suggest that the issue of climate justice, recognising the historical contribution of developed nations to climate change, will be front and centre at Bonn.

A rule book is important because the Paris agreement is not a legally binding treaty and only requires countries to set voluntary targets for reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. The agreement relies on a robust reporting mechanism to track countries progress and to pressure them into action.

The divide between developed countries and developing countries has been the most polarising at the negotiations that are held under the aegis of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change signed in 1992.

Industrialised nations historically account for over 70 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions, which are responsible for human-induced climate change. US is the largest contributor of carbon dioxide, the primary greenhouse gas.

Since the 1960s countries like China and India saw an uptick in emissions and have now emerged as the first and third largest contributors looking at yearly contributions. On a per capita basis however, India (1.9 Million Tonnes) was way behind the US (15.6 MT) and even China (7.4 MT) in 2016.

India has consistently argued that meeting the basic needs of its people is priority even if it means rising GHG emissions, and its development should not be hindered because its per capita emissions are much lower than developed countries.

“An entitlement to equal per capita emissions recognises the fundamental equality of all people and their rights to economic growth even within a carbon constrained world,” Harsh Vardhan said.

Globally, Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the treaty has been met with hostility because US continues to be the second largest annual emitter of GHG. India in particular was incensed that the US president chose to underscore the issue of funding for developing countries to mitigate and cope with climate change.

While highlighting India’s efforts to move towards a low carbon economy, like the promotion of renewable energy, enhancing energy efficiency, Harsh Vardhan noted that compensation of the developing countries by industrialised nations would be key.

“India makes its participation contingent on receiving billions of dollars in foreign aid,” Trump said in June. The US will continue to participate at the COP meetings because it cannot formally withdraw from the Paris agreement before 2020.

The Bonn negotiations will also clarify how mechanisms for transfer of resources between developed and developing countries will work.

It is widely recognised that climate change will disproportionately impact countries like India, where the resources available to mitigate climate change and combat related effects are limited. Low lying island nations like Fiji, which is co-hosting the Bonn talks, are at highest risk because their very existence is threatened by sea-level rise.

A UN emissions gap report released this week showed that the world is not on track to meet the central goal of the Paris agreement of keeping global temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius, from pre-industrial levels.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Close
T1C2, female cub of Avni, now a sub-adult tigress, aged two-and-a-half years, has been kept in captivity in a 4.5-hectare (ha) area in Pench Tiger Reserve since December 22, 2018.(Maharashtra Forest Department.)
T1C2, female cub of Avni, now a sub-adult tigress, aged two-and-a-half years, has been kept in captivity in a 4.5-hectare (ha) area in Pench Tiger Reserve since December 22, 2018.(Maharashtra Forest Department.)

Pilibhit tiger reserve’s approach reducing deadly conflict: Officials

By HT Correspondent | Edited by Abhinav Sahay, Lucknow
PUBLISHED ON MAR 04, 2021 02:45 PM IST
  • Erection of a 40-km-long electric fence around the part of the reserve known most for man-animal encounters has also helped in containing the incidents.
Close
On Tuesday, the International Energy Agency said global CO2 emissions dropped by 5.8% in 2020.(Unsplash)
On Tuesday, the International Energy Agency said global CO2 emissions dropped by 5.8% in 2020.(Unsplash)

Scientists warn of rebound after record 7% fall in global emissions

Reuters, London
PUBLISHED ON MAR 04, 2021 09:15 AM IST
Coronavirus restrictions led to a record 7% fall in global carbon emissions last year, but the drop will be short-lived unless efforts to phase out fossil fuel are intensified.
Close
The study was published today in the science journal Biology Letters.(Pixabay)
The study was published today in the science journal Biology Letters.(Pixabay)

Animals fake death for long periods to escape predators: Study

ANI, Bristol [england]
PUBLISHED ON MAR 03, 2021 01:02 PM IST
A recent study by researchers from the University of Bristol has found that many animals fake death to try to escape their predators. With some individuals in prey species remaining motionless, if in danger, for extended lengths of time.
Close
Representational image. (AFP)
Representational image. (AFP)

Climate crisis transformed Indian summer; the worst, say experts, is yet to come

By Jayashree Nandi, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON MAR 03, 2021 04:19 PM IST
The outlook for 2021 is worrying. According to IMD’s Monsoon Mission Coupled Forecasting System , the forecast suggests above-normal seasonal maximum and minimum temperatures are likely over most of India
Close
Scientists have previously calculated that CO2 emissions fell by 7% during the full year 2020 as people stayed at home because of the pandemic.(File photo for representation)
Scientists have previously calculated that CO2 emissions fell by 7% during the full year 2020 as people stayed at home because of the pandemic.(File photo for representation)

Global energy-related emissions rise in December despite pandemic shutdowns

AP
PUBLISHED ON MAR 02, 2021 03:08 PM IST
Figures released Tuesday by the International Energy Agency show emissions from the production and use of oil, gas and coal were 2% higher in December 2020 than a year earlier.
Close
The environmentalist has submitted pictures and videos with location coordinates as evidence of illegal dumping. (Sourced Photo )
The environmentalist has submitted pictures and videos with location coordinates as evidence of illegal dumping. (Sourced Photo )

Mumbai: Raw sewage dumping in Bhandup salt lakes, environmentalist seeks action

By Prayag Arora-Desai | Edited by Abhinav Sahay, Mumbai
UPDATED ON MAR 02, 2021 11:31 AM IST
  • The road, HT learned, has been constructed by a contractor to facilitate the installation of new sewer lines, for which wastewater from existing sewers is being pumped out in the salt lakes.
Close
“The steep rise in extreme weather events in recent decades is mainly because of climate change,” said M Rajeevan, secretary, ministry of earth sciences and co-author.(ANI file photo. Representative image)
“The steep rise in extreme weather events in recent decades is mainly because of climate change,” said M Rajeevan, secretary, ministry of earth sciences and co-author.(ANI file photo. Representative image)

Study: Sharp rise in extreme weather events in last 50 yrs

By Jayashree Nandi, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON MAR 02, 2021 04:14 AM IST
The paper, published in ScienceDirect journal on February 26, compared extreme weather events across two 20-year periods—1980-1999 and 2000-2019. The comparison highlighted an increase of 138% in heatwaves, 193% in lightning strikes, 25% in cold waves, 28% in floods, and a decrease of 19% in tropical cyclones.
Close
“The agenda for the discussion of around 14 projects have been pending for over a year. That will be the priority in this meeting,” said a senior forest department official.(Sakib Ali/HT file photo. Representative image)
“The agenda for the discussion of around 14 projects have been pending for over a year. That will be the priority in this meeting,” said a senior forest department official.(Sakib Ali/HT file photo. Representative image)

Ridge body to discuss Metro and RRTS projects on March 5

By Soumya Pillai, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON MAR 02, 2021 03:59 AM IST
Delhi environment minister Gopal Rai approved the appointment of independent members to the board, Sohail Madan, the Delhi centre manager of the Bombay Natural History Society and Vivek Menon, chief executive officer of Wildlife Trust of India, last week.
Close
The new law bans the sale, supply and distribution of a range of single-use items in South Australia, Environment Minister David Speirs said.(Unsplash)
The new law bans the sale, supply and distribution of a range of single-use items in South Australia, Environment Minister David Speirs said.(Unsplash)

Australian state bans plastic drinking straws and stirrers

AP, Adelaide, Australia
PUBLISHED ON MAR 01, 2021 06:28 PM IST
An Australian state on Monday became the first in the country to ban some single-used plastic items including drinking straws, stir sticks and cutlery.
Close
CSE said the courts are stretched and they managed to dispose of only 86 cases (environment and pollution-related) on an average every day in 2019.(Getty Images/iStockphoto)
CSE said the courts are stretched and they managed to dispose of only 86 cases (environment and pollution-related) on an average every day in 2019.(Getty Images/iStockphoto)

In 2019, 50,000 environment-related cases remained pending in courts

By Jayashree Nandi
PUBLISHED ON MAR 01, 2021 06:46 AM IST
The analysis is part of Centre for Science and Environment's (CSE’s) annual review titled “State of India’s Environment 2021” released last week. Interestingly, the highest backlog was found in the cases related to The Cigarette and other Tobacco Products Act, followed by The Indian Forest Act, Forest Conservation Act and the Noise Pollution Rules.
Close
In our intensely polluted, heart-and-lung-disease causing air, large swathes of Indians qualify as potential victims.(Arvind Yadav/HT file photo)
In our intensely polluted, heart-and-lung-disease causing air, large swathes of Indians qualify as potential victims.(Arvind Yadav/HT file photo)

Don’t ignore climate change in North India

By Bharati Chaturvedi, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON MAR 01, 2021 05:19 AM IST
In both North India and Texas, climate change is causing sudden temperature changes that people cannot cope with.
Close
A Kashmiri boy walks homeward after attending private classes, after a brief spell of fresh snowfall in the outskirts of Srinagar on Saturday.(AP)
A Kashmiri boy walks homeward after attending private classes, after a brief spell of fresh snowfall in the outskirts of Srinagar on Saturday.(AP)

Rain, thunderstorm likely over J&K, Uttarakhand, Himachal in next 24 hours

By Jayashree Nandi, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 09:08 AM IST
  • No significant change in temperatures is likely over most parts of northwest, west and central India during the next 24 hours.
Close
Delhi’s maximum temperature didn’t touch 30 degree C in 2020, 2019, 2015, 2014 and 2013 in February.(Arvind Yadav/HT Photo)
Delhi’s maximum temperature didn’t touch 30 degree C in 2020, 2019, 2015, 2014 and 2013 in February.(Arvind Yadav/HT Photo)

Weather experts weigh in on why spring gave Delhi a miss

By Jayashree Nandi, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON FEB 28, 2021 04:53 AM IST
Since Monday (till Saturday), maximum temperatures in Delhi have read: 28.9; 31.5; 32.5; 33.2; 33; and 31.7 degrees C. The situation is similar in most cities in the northern plains. Mumbai’s maximum temperature over the same period has ranged between 33.9 and 36.1 degrees C.
Close
The researchers have found that a similar genetic evolution happened independently in different species at different times, suggesting there is a unifying principle leading to the same social trait.(Unsplash)
The researchers have found that a similar genetic evolution happened independently in different species at different times, suggesting there is a unifying principle leading to the same social trait.(Unsplash)

Study finds maternal instincts lead to social life of bees

ANI, Toronto [canada]
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 06:39 PM IST
The maternal care of offspring is one of the behavioural drivers that has led some bee species to have an ever-expanding social life over the history of evolution.
Close
A widespread decline in abundance of emergent insects - whose immature stages develop in lakes and streams while the adults live on the land - can help to explain the alarming decline in abundance and diversity of aerial insectivorous birds across the USA. (Representational Image)(Pixabay)
A widespread decline in abundance of emergent insects - whose immature stages develop in lakes and streams while the adults live on the land - can help to explain the alarming decline in abundance and diversity of aerial insectivorous birds across the USA. (Representational Image)(Pixabay)

Study suggests improving water quality could help conserve insectivorous birds

ANI, Cleveland (ohio) [us]
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 01:14 PM IST
A new study is one of the first to find evidence for a causal link between the decline of insectivorous birds, the decline of emergent aquatic insects, and poor water quality.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP