Green activists hope climate summit focuses on emission cuts

The Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) and over 100 other NGOs across the world, which are partners of the UK-based BirdLife International, have stressed on replacing the "wasteful and energy-intensive lifestyles with holistic, balanced and energy-saving lifestyles. As a consequence of climate change about 15-37 per cent of species could be extinct by 2050, according to one global study. If the rise in temperature is more than 2 degree Celsius, it would be catastrophic for birds, nature, people and the global economy," BNHS Director Asad Rahmani said.

Sea-level rise will result in large-scale human population shift and further pressures on remaining natural habitats, he warned while calling for appropriate emission cuts to save the biodiversity from devastation.

The BirdLife International and its partners have prepared an action plan asking the developed countries to take the lead in cutting emissions so that global temperature increase is capped to less than 2 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels.

At the same time, it said, developing countries should also ensure that their emissions do not reach levels as experienced by developed countries in the past decades. Global emissions should peak and decline by 2020 and go to 80 per cent below 1990 levels by 2050.

Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD), providing fund to developing countries to reduce emissions, transparency in accounting emissions are some of the areas the summit must look into, said the coalition of NGOs. "Signing a fair, ambitious and binding deal in Copenhagen means responding to calls of tens of millions people and a failure to agree on a deal means simply ignoring them," added Kim Carstensen, the leader of the Global Climate Initiative from World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

"Ignoring millions of people will come at a great price for the whole world. The green light for a climate deal is there and now leaders have to make the steps," he added. According to the WWF, world leaders have a priceless opportunity to show that politics is able to look beyond next parliamentary elections and party rivalries. A galaxy of leaders are attending the global climate summit at Denmark which started from yesterday to chalk out a new treaty to replace the Kyoto Protocol which expires on 2012.

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