Earth Day: India reminds developed nations of 'broken promises' : The Tribune India

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Earth Day: India reminds developed nations of 'broken promises'

To raise issue at Petersberg Climate Dialogue

Earth Day: India reminds developed nations of 'broken promises'

Children paint a graffiti on a road in front of Junagarh fort on World Earth Day amid a nationwide lockdown, in Bikaner, Wednesday, April 22, 2020. PTI

Vibha Sharma

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, April 22

Stating that sustainable development cannot be achieved in isolation, Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar today told developed nations to fulfil their promises on technology transfer and monetary help for adaptation and mitigation as promised in climate change agreements and conferences.

India stands committed to achieving its targets on renewable energy, carbon sinks and reducing emissions but they (developed nations) must also be taken to task on “broken promises”, Environment Minister said speaking on the occasion of the 2020 Earth Day: Impact of Covid-19 on climate action.

“The biggest hurdle to sustainable development is broken promises. If you (developed nations) are not helping the poor and continuing without changing your existing lifestyles you cannot achieve sustainable development,” Javadekar said, adding that India will raise the issue of “broken promises” at the upcoming Petersberg Climate Dialogue.

“The pandemic has shown that the World needs to think over the way we are living.  We need to think what we live and what we are living for,” he said talking of the “environment friendly Indian lifestyle and its response to the pandemic which has shown the World how to move ahead”.

“People have realised the importance of sustainable development in past one month when they saw clean rivers, green flora and fauna, clean skies, stars in the skies and from Jalandhar Himalayas and many other things. That is how we used to live in villages, when we created cities because of our needs and increasing populations

“Let us understand we cannot be too romantic on this. If we want everything to be clean, green, blue then you have to stop a few things. You cannot have vehicles, you cannot have industries, you will have to go back to your olds days of village but then you can sustain only 30 crore people and not 130 crore people that also we must understand and think of it in holistic manner.     

“It is the choice earlier generation has made, it is now part of history. Our challenge is to make environment sustainable even in these circumstances,” he said evoking PM Narendra Modi’s  stress on lifestyle and climate justice.

Taking on the developed nations, in particular America and Europe, Javadekar said India’ power consumption was just 1,000 units per year per person in comparison to 12,000 units per year per person in the US.

“We have only 25 cars per 1,000 population in comparison to the West which has 400 to 600.  What America and Europe have done is they have exported their pollutions to China and other countries so that they get clean goods and someone else gets blamed.

“But I can say with confidence that it is the consumer who is responsible for pollution and not the producer. We have to have sustainable lifestyle as a core value.”

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