India objects shifting of HFCs from Kyoto

Kyoto Protocol only apply to industrialised countries but Montreal Protocol applies to all parties.

Cancun: India will not agree to the restrictions on Hydro fluorocarbons (HFCs) being shifted from the Kyoto Protocol that deals with climate change to the Montreal Protocol to protect the Ozone layer, Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said here on Tuesday.

Kyoto Protocol obligations only apply to industrialised countries but the Montreal Protocol, which phases out Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and Hydrochloroflurocarbons (HCFCs) applies to all parties from developed and developing countries including India.

"This is not acceptable to India," Ramesh told European Union`s top climate official Connie Hedegaard during a three-hours meeting here, noting that India had just phased out CFCs and started using HFCs.

"This is not going to sell with the Indian industry? it will create a serious instability problem," he said. HFCs, used in refrigerators and air conditioners, contribute more to global warming than Carbon Dioxide but its inclusion in the Montreal Protocol has been opposed by India, China and Brazil.
The proposal, however, is supported by the US, Mexico and a few others, which argue that since there is deadlock over climate negotiations on the Kyoto Protocol, the older treaty maybe an effective way to curb the planet warming gas and combat climate change.

The Montreal Protocol, which has phased out an estimated 97 per cent of 100 Ozone-depleting chemicals, has been described as by former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan as "perhaps the most successful international agreement to date."

On the sidelines of the climate talks meeting here, Ramesh also told Hedegaard that the "legal" nature of a potential new treaty was still not clear and it would have to be thrashed out going forward.

"India does not want to put the cart before the horse," the minister said, noting that substance of the treaty needed to be worked out before the form.

"What is this animal called legally binding agreement," he said.

In the meeting, Ramesh flagged concerns about the transparency of fast-start funding of $30 billion, which has to be provided by developed countries to the nations that are the most vulnerable to climate change.
"How much is new and additional we don`t know," he said. "How much is multilateral and how much is bilateral and which are countries being covered these have to be clarified."

"They want transparency in our actions and they don`t provide transparency in theirs," he added.


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