India reduces expectation from Copenhagen climate summit (Lead)

New Delhi, Nov 19 ( Do not expect anything much from next month’s climate summit in Copenhagen, Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said Thursday, reiterating that India is not going to accept any legally binding cuts on its greenhouse gas emissions.

“Don’t expect anything much from Copenhagen. We will stick to our stand,” Ramesh told reporters here while releasing the State of World Population Report 2009.

“It seems there is a long haul before we arrive at an international commitment that is legally binding and in which legally binding commitments are taken by the developed countries,” he added.

The Dec 7-18 summit of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change is anyway unlikely to produce any global deal on combating global warming, because rich countries responsible for the damage have neither promised significant emission cuts nor put on the table significant money to help developing countries fight climate change.

Ramesh stated that rather than committing to legally binding cuts internationally, India needs to take proactive steps domestically to tackle climate change.

“We need to be proactive, aggressive and ruthless in our domestic obligations. We need to draw a distinction,” he added.

“We make excellent action reports but what is needed is outcomes. Let us set targets and work towards it. For example, transport sector is a major source of emissions. Let’s set a target that by 2030, we will keep the emissions level from transport sector at 25 percent of the total emissions,” he said.

He stated that Indians need to look towards cleaner energy generation and should use better technology in coal combustion. Ramesh also stressed the importance of renewable energy sources.

On a query regarding water problems, the minister said: “We need water legislation. A better pricing of water is needed.”

He further stated that beef eating, common in many countries, is a cause of greenhouse gas emissions. “My suggestion to them is to stop eating beef, because it releases methane,” he said.