Climate change shouldn't be used as commercial opportunity: India

Says a mechanism should be set up to turn technology and innovation into an effective instrument for global public good

UN climate talks in Bonn from Aug 31-Sept 4

Warning that the "calamity" of climate change should not be used as a commercial opportunity, India today asked the developed nations to set up a mechanism that will turn technology and innovation into an effective instrument for "public good and not just private returns".

"There is a need to evolve a set of precepts, a kind of commandments, especially for the youth of the world, that help in developing a unified global perspective to economic growth so that the disparity in the thinking of the 'developed' and 'developing' countries could be bridged," India said in its submission before the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

"The removal of such barriers of thought and the creation of a regime where facilitative technology transfer replaces an exploitative market driven mechanism could pave the way for a common understanding of universal progress," it said citing verses from Veda and thoughts of Mahatma Gandhi.

"If climate change is a calamity that mankind must adapt to while taking mitigation action withal, it should not be used as a commercial opportunity. It is time that a mechanism is set up which will turn technology and innovation into an effective instrument for global public good, not just private returns," India said.

Stating that the cumulative accumulation of greenhouse gases (GHGs) historically since industrial revolution has resulted in the current problem of global warming, India said this is further compounded by the tepid and inadequate response of the developed countries even after the adoption of the UNFCCC.

As a result, an 'emission' ambition gap has been created calling for enhanced global actions to address it.

India, even though not a part of the problem, has been an active and constructive participant in the search for solutions, it said.

Even now, when the per capita emissions of many developed countries vary between 7 to 15 metric tonnes, the per capita emissions in India were only about 1.56 metric tonnes in 2010.

Developed countries can certainly bring down their emission intensity by moderating their consumption and substantially utilise their investments by employing them for development activities in countries housing a vast majority of people barely living at subsistence level, the report said.

The ratio of emission avoided per dollar invested and economic growth attained would be relatively more favourable in case of investments made in India, it said.

India said no country in the world has been able to achieve a Human Development Index of 0.9 or more without an annual energy availability of at least 4 toe per capita.

"With a HDI of 0.586 and global rank of 135, India has a lot to do to provide a dignified life to its population and meet their rightful aspirations," it said.