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|Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
said nations made “limited progress” at the Copenhagen
climate-change summit and no one was satisfied with the outcome.
“There is no escaping the truth that the nations of the world have
to move to a low greenhouse gas emissions and energy efficient
development path,” Singh told delegates attending the Indian Science
Congress in the southern city of Thiruvananthapuram today, according
to an e-mailed statement from his office.
The Copenhagen Accord sets the goal of limiting global temperature
increases to 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit). It also
pledges $30 billion between 2010 and 2012 and $100 billion a year by
2020 for developing countries to help adapt to and mitigate the
effects of climate change.
The agreement has been criticized by environmental groups such as
Friends of the Earth and carbon traders including Barclays Capital
as it didn’t set binding targets. While countries including the
U.S., China and India agreed on Dec. 19 to “take note” of the
agreement, they were given until Jan. 31 to list actions and
India’s Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said on Dec. 22 a
statement by the White House senior adviser David Axelrod that the
U.S. can challenge India and China if they don’t meet the goals is
“spin” meant for domestic consumption.
China, the world’s largest polluter, acted as a “responsible” nation
at the talks last month and doesn’t merit subsequent criticism, the
country’s state-run Xinhua News Agency said in a commentary.
There is a shift to renewable sources of energy and India must take
the lead in the development of science and technology related to
mitigation and adaptation of climate change, Singh said, according
to the statement today.
The cost of switching away from fossil fuels in the next 20 years is
now estimated at $10 trillion and will rise by $500 billion for each
year of delay, the International Energy Agency, a Paris-based
adviser to 28 developed nations, said in October. The use of more
energy-efficient technology will save about $8.6 trillion in that
time, it said.
India needs to increase its solar and nuclear supplies
“considerably,” Singh said. An accord last year with the Nuclear
Suppliers Group will lift restrictions on the transfer of nuclear
fuel and technology to India, he said.