The Daily Telegraph journalist/blogger, Tim Blair, is at it again with another misleading global warming denialist post on July 10, titled Go India .
Penny Wong’s theory:
Senator Wong said unless developed countries like Australia demonstrated leadership, developing countries would not commit to the required reductions in greenhouse pollution.
India issued its National Action Plan on Climate Change in June 2008 disputing man-made global warming fears and declared the country of one billion people had no intention of stopping its energy growth or cutting back its CO2 emissions ...
The report declared: “No firm link between the documented [climate] changes described below and warming due to anthropogenic climate change has yet been established.”
The report made clear that India has no plans to cut back energy usage. “It is obvious that India needs to substantially increase its per capita energy consumption to provide a minimally acceptable level of wellbeing to its people.”
(Via Marc Morano)
Sounds good, doesn't it? However there is one small problem - this is a very simplistic rendition of India's position on climate change (the title of its action plan should have given Tim the hint) and not how other sections of the international and Indian media see the situation.
The PM further reinstated India’s stand on this global issue, in confirmation with the world view by informing that India believes that every citizen of this planet should have an equal share of the planetary atmospheric space and therefore, long-term convergence of per capita GHG emissions was the only equitable basis for a global agreement to tackle climate change. In this context, Dr. Singh reaffirmed India’s pledge that as it pursued sustainable development, its per capita GHG emissions would not exceed the per capita GHG emissions of developed countries, despite India’s developmental imperatives.
The PM also clarified that the National Action Plan would evolve and change in the light of changing circumstances and therefore invited broader interaction with civil society as a means to further improve the various elements of the Plan. He concluded by recalling Mahatma Gandhi’s advice: “The earth has enough resources to meet the needs of people, but will never have enough to serve their greed”.
And in the India Times:
Explaining the importance of the Indian position, which was first stated by the prime minister at last year's G8 summit in Germany, Saran said: "India has said that at no point will its own per capita emissions exceed that of developed countries.
"Now this is a huge contribution by India to the entire climate change debate. Because, number one, it answers the criticism that while India is asking others to limit and reduce their emissions, what is India prepared to do? Well, India is prepared to accept the limitation on its per capita emissions.
And yet again from The Financial Times:
Manmohan Singh, India’s prime minister, on Monday vowed to combat climate change by focusing on renewable energy as he unveiled the country’s long-awaited policy on global warming. However, he stopped short of setting targets for reducing greenhouse gases.
The “national action plan” outlines an eight-point strategy that seeks to sustain rapid economic growth of 9 per cent while addressing the global threat of climate change.
One last example from the Indian Business Standard...
The new point in the action plan is that it proposes sector-wise benchmarks and does its own version of domestic carbon credit trade. It also proposes caps on energy use in polluting sectors, such as thermal power, cement, fertiliser and iron and steel. Going further, it provides for retirement of certain categories of old and inefficient coal-based power plants and phasing out of end-of-life vehicles with the mandatory obligation on the last owners to hand them over at designated collection centres.
Indian Prime Minister's press release of 30 June 2008:
Prime Minister emphasized the global dimension of the challenge of climate change, which demands a global and cooperative effort on the basis of the principle of equity. India, he said, was ready to play its role as a responsible member of the international community and to make its own contribution.
So it appears that India does in fact have plans to cap its greenhouse gas emissions. The situation is not quite as black and white as Mr. Blair implies.
A bit of background from ResponseNet in October last year:
Despite being the world's second most populous country and fourth largest economy, India's CO2 emissions is still only one-fifth that of the U.S. or China. Unlike in other countries, India's carbon intensity did not rise as economic growth accelerated in the last decade. So how should India be treated in the global dialogue on climate change?
The question Tim Blair needs to ask himself is - when does having a consistent position on an issue begin to turn into an effort to deceive?
India's National Action Plan on Climate Change is here.