India not ready for a new climate regime
Durban: Terming pressure from rich nations to take legally binding emission cuts as "rumours", India Saturday reiterated that it is not ready to accept a new climate treaty but looked forward to the implementation of the principles of the existing climate regime.
Speaking at an official press conference at the International Convention Centre (ICC), the venue of the Dec 29-Nov 9 UN climate change talks here, India's chief negotiator J.M. Mauskar said the country is deeply concerned that there has been hardly any progress on achieving the key objectives of negotiations.
"There should be no ambiguity about what our objective is. Our objective in these negotiations is not to launch a process for a new climate treaty, but rather enhance implementation of the principles and provisions of the existing and valid climate treaty, which is the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)," Mauskar said.
Nothing substantial has come out during the first week of the conference but negotiations are expected to catch up from Monday when around 14 heads of states and 130 ministers will be discussing ways to save the planet.
India has been firm on its stand of "equity" that would guarantee equal development opportunity to all people.
Mauskar said the discussions in Durban are focused on operationalisation of the Cancun agreements and second commitment period of Kyoto Protocol - the only legally binding regime which ends in 2012.
"Durban meet should establish the second commitment period under the Kyoto Protocol, where developed country parties should take quantified emissions reduction. We need a qualitatively robust outcome to the Kyoto discussions, not a proforma which does not meet the aspirations of the developing countries," he said.
Mauskar emphasised that Kyoto Protocol will remain valid and in effect until state parties decide to abrogate or amend or decide to replace it with another legal instrument.
"The current negotiations are about implementing the commitments of the parties on emission reductions in a manner that can help us to meet the global goal."
Canada, Japan and Russia have already declared they will not make any commitment for a second period. The US has also said it will not make any legally binding commitment - even outside the protocol - unless emerging economies like China and India did the same.
The European Union has now come up with a compromise suggestion by which rich countries agree to a second commitment period if emerging economies agree to emission controls that will become legally binding after 2020. India has traditionally opposed any such idea and Mauskar made it apparent that it will continue to do so.
Mauskar denied report of any fissures among the BASIC (Brazil, South Africa, India and China) group saying all the countries are on the same platform on principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibility.