India wants Poland climate summit to be 'balanced and consistent' with Paris agreement
India is expecting that the outcome of the forthcoming UN climate summit in Poland will be "balanced, inclusive and consistent with the principles" of the Paris agreement, a senior Environment Ministry official said Friday.
The official asserted India will not create obstacles but will facilitate a "positive" outcome.
Noting that India wants its "basic concerns" to be met, the official said the critical points, for India, include making the issue of differentiation a part of the dialogue at the summit, giving pre-2020 climate action discussions importance and seeing some conclusion on the issue of finance — both in terms of actual availability and its commitment.
Asked whether India can be pressured to revise its climate action commitments in the wake of the recent UN's Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change report, the official said India's Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) goals are very ambitious "but as a country, we would like to do better than what we have promised".
To that extent, if the developed countries put resource, technology and equity in the centre of all discussions, they can always take place, he said.
The 24th meeting of Conference of Parties (COP-24) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Poland next month is expected to finalise guidelines and a rulebook for implementation of the 2015 Paris Agreement.
It is also expected to finalise the final political phase of 2018 Facilitative 'Talanoa' Dialogue, which has been started largely for sharing of best practices of different countries.
Union Environment Secretary C K Mishra said, "What are we looking at in terms of India — we have always maintained that the stand we want is the results or outcome of this CoP-24 should be balanced, inclusive and consistent with the principles of the Paris agreement.
"There is a reason I say consistent with the Paris agreement, the reason is there are some countries which are making attempts to reopen Paris agreement which we are opposed to," Mishra said.
The objective of Paris Agreement is to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change by keeping the global temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
India strongly supports this objective and considers it important to eradicate poverty.
"This (CoP-24) is the formulation of procedures and rulebook based on Paris. The second is this will also discuss stock-taking exercise that is going to take place in the pre-2020. Third, this might see the final phase of the Talanoa dialogue," Mishra said.
Elaborating the issues critical for India, Mishra said, "As far as India is concerned, first and foremost we have told the CoP presidency that India is not going to create an obstacle. We want to facilitate an outcome. A positive outcome is what we are looking at.
"Only thing that we want is that our basic concerns are met. Differentiation should be a part of all the dialogue we hold (in Poland). Our other concern is that pre-2020 should have as much importance as is due to them despite the fact that we will soon be crossing 2020 in terms of dialogues and processes," Mishra said, adding that thirdly "we need to put an end to 'Talanoa' Dialogue".
"We, as a country and as a block, would like to see some conclusion on the issue of finance both in terms of actual availability of finance its commitment," he said.
"India would work with all Parties in an open, transparent, inclusive and Party-driven manner to achieve a balanced and comprehensive outcome in the form of final PAWP at COP 24," he said.
India's expectation from COP-24 is that the decisions should be in consonance with the principles of UNFCCC, Kyoto Protocol and Paris Agreement including equity, common-but-differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities (CBDR-RC), and climate justice.
Mishra said India has taken many actions to strengthen its position, which includes the recent meeting with BASIC (Brazil, South Africa, India and China) countries.
"We are also working with G77 and China to ensure that our voice is heard as a block," he said, and asserted, "Paris is going to be alive and it won't be renegotiated."
(With inputs from agencies.)