NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday took on developed countries at the Paris climate summit and said climate change is the result of global warming that came from the prosperity and progress of an industrial age powered by fossil fuels and developing nations are not responsible for it.
In his address to world leaders, Modi spoke of developed nations’ role in climate change. “They have the most room to make the cuts and make the strongest impact... The prosperous still have a strong carbon footprint and the world’s billions at the bottom of the development ladder are seeking space to grow,” he said, adding, “The principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities must remain the bedrock of our collective enterprise.” There should be aggressive mitigative action by the developed countries by 2020, he said.
“We still need conventional energy — we need to make it clean, not impose an end to its use,” he added.
Modi also called on rich nations to meet their commitment to muster $100 billion a year from 2020 to help poor countries cope with climate change.
Earlier, while inaugurating the India Pavilion at the Conference of Party (CoP21), Modi said, climate change “is the result of global warming that came from the prosperity and progress of an industrial age powered by fossil fuels. But, we in India face its consequences today. We see it in the risks to our farmers, the changes in weather patterns, and the intensity of natural disasters”.
Meanwhile, Modi along with French President Francois Hollande jointly launched the International Solar Alliance and pledged India’s assistance of $30 million for the initiative. India will host the initiative in the National Institute of Solar Energy in Gurgaon.
In a Financial Times op-ed, Modi had said justice demands that with what little carbon we can still safely burn, developing countries are allowed to grow. “The lifestyles of a few must not crowd out opportunities for the many still on the first steps of the development ladder,” he said. Calling on the world to act with urgency, Modi said India wants an equitable and durable agreement, which must restore balance between humanity and nature.