India need not emulate China on emission cut

The Hindu, November 28, 2009
The Chinese cut in emissions per unit of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) by 40-45 per cent over 2005 levels by 2020 should not compel India to follow suit, CUTS International, a non-governmental organisation has said.

“The Chinese not only operate at a much higher level of energy intensity than India but also have a much higher growth rate,” a statement issued by CUTS on Friday said.

If India was considering making any commitment in Copenhagen, it should at best be to reduce the trend rate of growth of emissions through marginal measures such as popularising use of public transport among its growing population, increasing production of green energy to fuel its economic growth and specifying domestic regulations to ensure reduced emissions, the statement said.

“The Chinese rate of growth of GDP tops India’s by 2 per cent per annum -10 per cent versus 8 per cent approximately over the last five years. If these trends were to continue in the next 11 years, the Indian GDP would increase by 133 per cent and that of China by 185 per cent over 2009 levels. Thus, even if China reduces emission intensity by 40-45 per cent and India does not alter its intensity, Chinese emissions would rise by 140 per cent (percentage growth of GDP less energy intensity decrease) which would be higher than the Indian growth of 133 per cent,” it said.

These facts were important given that China has unilaterally announced these cuts even when it was in negotiations with India to develop a joint stance at Copenhagen, it said.

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