India against emission cuts, says Shyam Saran

He challenged reports that the Indian negotiators had failed to stick to the country’s stand on not accepting emission cuts.

Saran and an official from the Ministry of External Affairs were the two principal climate change negotiators for India at L’Aquila. The MEF declaration that followed the negotiations was later signed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The declaration proposes a cap on maximum rise in global temperature at two degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial level. In its fourth assessment report, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has stated that the best case scenario for the world is a rise in global temperature by 1.8 degrees Celsius by 2100.

The planet has warmed by 0.75 degrees from the levels recorded in 1860, which was triggered by rapid industrialisation in the West.

By accepting MEF declaration, many say that India has acceded to emission caps, which contradicts the country’s position on the issue. “This doesn’t amount to an agreement on emission cuts by developing countries,” Saran asserted.

He admitted that countries were making slower progress towards signing a treaty at the climate change meeting to be held in Copenhagen in December. 

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