War within gov­ern­ment on cli­mate change

TAC­TIC En­vi­ron­ment min­is­ter calls G-20 sherpa’s com­ment on China as ‘per­sonal’ view

Hindustan Times (Lucknow) - - FRONT PAGE - Chetan Chauhan ■ chetan@hin­dus­tan­times.com

A day after G-20 sherpa Suresh Prabhu said In­dia should not align with China on cli­mate is­sues, the gov­ern­ment dis­tanced it­self from his view with en­vi­ron­ment min­is­ter Prakash Javadekar call­ing it his “per­sonal” opin­ion.

NEW DELHI: A day after G-20 sherpa Suresh Prabhu said In­dia should not align with China on cli­mate is­sues, the gov­ern­ment dis­tanced it­self from his view with en­vi­ron­ment min­is­ter Prakash Javadekar call­ing it his “per­sonal” opin­ion.

Prabhu com­ments had led to spec­u­la­tion that In­dia may break away from the Ba­sic group that has In­dia, China, South Africa and Brazil. Javadekar re­fused to ei­ther con­firm or deny reit­er­at­ing that what Prabhu said was his per­sonal view. Mov­ing away from China can help In­dia in isolating it­self from tak­ing emis­sion mit­i­ga­tion cuts, which ap­pears to be im­mi­nent for China. With 22% of In­di­ans poor as against less than 10% for China, In­dia may also get more fi­nan­cial aid from the rich na­tions to fight cli­mate change. China is world’s largest car­bon emit­ter fol­lowed by United States and In­dia is fourth with Rus­sia.

“Stand­ing with China does not help In­dia,” Prabhu had said. He also added that In­dia should have a more open cli­mate stand for the talks that is ex­pected to con­clude in Paris in 2015 with an agree­ment on a new cli­mate deal to be ef­fec­tive from 2020 on­wards.

Gov­ern­ment sources said the Prime Min­is­ter’s Of­fice was ready­ing the text on In­dia’s cli­mate stand and first glimpse of it will be vis­i­ble at the G-20 sum­mit in Aus­tralia in which Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi would be par­tic­i­pat­ing.

“The tricky is­sue of cli­mate change can­not be dealt with­out be­ing dis­cus­sion at the high­est geo-po­lit­i­cal plat­forms. One should not for­get that cli­mate change is closely linked with econ­omy and there­fore, it should be dis­cussed at G-20,” a se­nior gov­ern­ment of­fi­cial said.

PTI FILE

Javadekar dis­tances him­self from Suresh Prabhu’s com­ment that In­dia should not align with China on cli­mate is­sues.

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