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'No pressure on India as a result of China-US climate deal'

Press Trust of India  |  Beijing 

Denying there is any pressure on India ahead of next month's Paris Climate Change Conference as a result of the China-US climate deal, India today said its per-capita emissions are much lower than the top two polluters and its efforts in cutting pollution are widely appreciated.

India will not reach the per-capita emission levels, China and the US have committed to achieve by 2020, Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said after attending the 21st BASIC (Brazil, South Africa, India, China) countries meeting on Climate Change here.

Replying to a question on whether the China-US deal will put any pressure on India, he said: "No way. India has done exceedingly well. Our Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) have been appreciated all over the world."

Last November, world's top two carbon emitters, China and the US reached a surprise agreement on climate change to take ambitious action to limit greenhouse gases emission and announced respective post-2020 goals of coping with climate change during US President Barack Obama's visit here.

The deal came as a surprise to India and other countries as China was part of BASIC countries - fighting for the rights of the developing countries - and it criticised India whose emissions were way below that of China's.

Downplaying the China-US deal and its impact on the BASIC, Javadekar said, "BASIC is the group working for last eight- nine years. It has made a meaningful contribution. So the discourses cannot be changed midway just because somebody is a large or growing economy. Every country needs to take responsible action.

"We contribute just three per cent to the cumulative emissions but we want to be part of the solution. India wants to offer solution and put some demands also to achieve the target. We cannot make progress in isolation," he said.

Defending China's action, China's Special Representative on Climate Change, Xie Zhenhua told the media that China's efforts to reach agreement with the US is to strengthen South-South as well as South-North cooperation.

Besides working with BASIC and developing countries, China is also working with the US and EU to work out a durable agreement on climate change, he said.

On India's expectations at the Paris conference, Javadekar said, "The developed world has taken more than their fair share. So developed countries need to further go up in their ambitions.

"If we fail in Paris, there is no option for the world. All countries have to be responsible," he said.

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First Published: Sat, October 31 2015. 19:57 IST