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Indian climate policy: Delhi Seminar towards an alternative position

This paper argues that a clearer idea of trends in the global negotiations are emerging, and it does not make a pretty picture. Leading industrialized countries (ICs), including the “green” Europeans, have been backtracking for several months now on earlier commitments to undertake deep emission cuts. Compared to its earlier offer of 0-50% cuts from 1990 levels, broadly as called for by the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the EU offer is now a mere 20% and that too with offsets, i.e. measures that allow ICs to substitute emission reductions in their own nations by supposedly equivalent actions in developing countries (DCs), such as planting trees. Such offsets will not only bring down actual emission reductions by almost half, but will also shift the burden of mitigation to DCs. The US is yet to commit itself to entering any global Treaty arrangement and even the newly adopted Bill only promises a meager 3% reduction from 1990 levels by 2020.