Negotiations: Role of PM, Jairam come in for praise

“If you look at the discussions in India over the last two years relative to the ones before, I do think there is a sea change,” he said.

India, he maintained, is no longer seen as a difficult negotiator, but is seen to be moving to the centre of these international discussions. Stern, Professor at London School of Economics was delivering the second Jeremy Grantham Lecture on Climate Change at the Indian Institute of Science on Saturday.

Manmohan praised

Stern praised Manmohan Singh for going out of his way in moving forward climate negotiations.

He cited as proof Singh’s assurance in not letting India’s emissions per capita exceed the average of the developed world during the G-8 conference in the summer of 2007. “He did not have to go there, but I think it was very effective,” he said.

Incidentally, Stern first came to work in India about 36 years ago on the invitation of Manmohan Singh, who was then a mid-level official in the Finance Ministry.

Stern was also fulsome in his praise for Jairam Ramesh. “Ramesh has been a breath of fresh air in international policy discussions on climate change,” he said.

He added that Ramesh and his colleagues are participating actively in negotiations, and have completely changed the way India is seen.

He also praised targets that India has set for contributions, and the commitment to generate 20 gigawatts of solar power by 2020. He also revealed that the UN appointed high level advisory group on Climate Change Financing, of which he was a member, would release its report in two weeks.

The advisory group was formed by the UN Secretary General following the pledge by rich countries at Copenhagen last year to mobilise 100 billion dollars for climate change.

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