New Delhi, Aug.15 : Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh on Friday said that long-term solutions were needed on a priority to deal with the problems of global warming and climate change.
Addressing the nation on the occasion of its 62nd Independence Day, Dr. Singh warned that the Himalayas are under environmental threat, and therefore, urgent measures were required to counter it.
"If the Himalayan glaciers recede, the flow of water in our sacred rivers will go down. Climate change can disrupt our economy in several ways. Some of our coastal areas could be submerged. Our monsoon pattern may change. We need long-term solutions to such threats. A national consensus is also required for the Government to evolve effective policies to deal with these problems," he said.
He said that his government has introduced a National Action Plan on Climate Change, which shows how "each of us must adapt our ways of working and living and how we must treat our natural resources, so that our carbon emissions remain within reasonable limits and our environment is protected".
The Prime Minister unveiled his government's climate change action plan in June this year. It is a plan that does not set target reduction of greenhouse gas emissions but seeks to promote sustainable development through use of clean technologies.
The National Action Plan on Climate Change categorically states that India's per capita greenhouse gas emissions will "at no point exceed that of developed countries."
The plan is to be implemented thorough eight missions that represent multi-pronged, long-term and integrated strategies for achieving key goals in the context of climate change.
The document underlines that "India will engage actively in multilateral negotiations in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC) in a positive, constructive and forward-looking manner."
"Our objective will be to establish an effective, cooperative and equitable global approach based on the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and relative capabilities enshrined in the UNFCC," the plan document said.
It states that the success of its efforts would be enhanced if the developed nations fulfill their commitments under UNFCC to transfer additional financial resources and climate friendly technologies to the developing countries.
The eight missions focus on increasing share of solar energy in the total energy mix; implementation of energy efficiency measures; launching sustainable habitats; effective water resource management; safeguarding Himalyan glacier and mountain eco-system, enhance eco-system services; making agriculture more resilient to climate change and set up a Strategic Knowledge Mission for focussed research in the area.
The 22 experts, who are a part of the Prime Minister's Committee, are however divided over the approach to be adopted for reduction of green house gas reduction.