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UK-India to cooperate for cleaner tech options

Britain's High Commissioner to India Sir Michael Arthur, speaking in Chennai, said the concepts of society and environment are now inseparably linked.

india Updated: Feb 03, 2006 20:44 IST
UK Bureau
UK Bureau

Sir Michael Arthur, Britain's High Commissioner to India, speaking in Chennai to a group of academicians, businessmen and journalists said the concepts of society and environment are now inseparably linked.

The Centre for Security Analysis (CSA) hosted the session.

Sustainable economic development can only be achieved when environmental issues are factored into public policy making and private sector growth. Natural and man-made disasters need mitigation. But, most important, the impact of climate change is one of the main challenges for our generation. He stressed the urgent need to strengthen multilateral and bilateral partnerships to tackle environmental security.

Sir Michael said that energy supply, energy use and energy security are linked themes. Both demand and supply considerations mattered. "The imposition of energy consumption restrictions is impractical in developing countries. We need to find more creative, environment-friendly ways of allowing energy consumption to grow at the pace required for development and economic growth."

He described how the UK's Energy Environment White Paper 2003 linked environment with energy supply security. He believed that the G8 Action Plan at Gleneagles raised the consciousness of key global players.

He argued that the recent UK-India agreement to conduct joint research into barriers to developing cleaner technology, including IPR to protect commercial interests in R&D and the UK-India Joint Statement on Sustainable Development, were important steps showing the way forward.

Government, business and civil society in the UK and India should work more closely together in developing renewable energy technologies - biomass, solar, wind, hydel. Private partnerships like Tata-BP Solar are already showing the way. The British government is taking a lead in pushing this sector.

First Published: Feb 03, 2006 20:44 IST