'Ramesh showed wrong picture of growth, environment'

'Ramesh showed wrong picture of growth, environment'

Calling for environment protection and development to be done simultaneously, Union Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar took a dig at Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Wednesday alleging he created a false notion that "environment protection and country's development are each other's enemy".

"We have to ensure growth and environment protection together. In the last few years, it was portrayed that environment protection and development are enemies. At the time of Jairam Ramesh (when he was environment minister), it was showed as if environment protection and development of the country cannot be done together. This is not true," Javadekar said at 'Sustainability Summit' organised here.

The minister said the best example of sustainable model of growth and environment protection is Delhi Metro.

"Delhi Metro has in 20 years built 274 stations with 50 lakh footfall which has reduced traffic of four lakh vehicles on the road. Five times the trees which were cut during the building of the stations, have also been planted and are fully grown also in the last 20 years. This is the best example. So development and environment protection are not enemies," Javadekar said.

Ramesh was the Minister of State (independent charge) for environment, forests and climate change from May 2009 to July 2011.

Addressing the summit organised by Panchjanya, a weekly magazine published by Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh in Hindi, Javadekar said climate change has begun to result in rising temperatures, droughts and unseasonal rains and flooding, causing damage to properties and lives in different countries.

The minister, who has just returned from Madrid after attending the 25th conference of parties (COP) on climate change, said that he urged the nations to ratify the Paris Agreement to fight climate change.

Javadekar said developed nations should cut carbon emissions more to help fight climate change and provide the funds as promised during the meet in Copenhagen.

"In Copenhagen summit, developed countries promised USD 100 billion every year for fighting climate change but it has not been done. There is a cost to reduce carbon emissions and developed countries must give it to the developing nations," he said.

Javadekar said India is moving aggressively on carbon emission reduction and will reduce emissions by 30 per cent by 2030.

On the energy front, the minister said India has taken a leap in generation of energy from renewable sources –- wind and solar -- and said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has set an ambitious target of generating 4,50,000 MW of energy through renewable sources.

"We are walking the talk" on the sustainable development goals, he said.

The minister also said that prior to 2014, India had a very negative image of opposing every issue but under the leadership of Narendra Modi, India led from the front on the issues of environment protection and climate change.

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