BJP criticizes Jairam Ramesh over flexibility on climate change policy

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New Delhi, Oct 19(ANI): Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) General Secretary Arun Jaitely on Monday criticized Union Environment and Forest Minister Jairam Ramesh over reports that he has written to the Prime Minister suggesting a radical change in ndia's stated position on the climate change negotiations.

Earlier, it was reported that Ramesh had written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh suggesting India to ditch the Kyoto protocol, and delink itself from the G-77 bloc of developing nations and take on greenhouse gas emission commitments.

Reacting over the reports, Jaitely said it would mean that India virtually accepts the stance of the developed countries that the big four developing economies,- India, China, Brazil and South Africa, cut emissions below the base level.

"The direct consequence of all this would be that if India undertakes such a commitment when our industrial growth has not taken place completely then the cost we have to incur to acquire energy, to acquire alternative energy, would be so high that it will retard our industrial growth and socioeconomic initiatives of our country like poverty alleviation will suffer a major setback," Jaitely said in a news conference in the national capital.

Earlier on Friday, Ramesh had said that India would scale back demands for deep emissions cuts by rich nations if a global climate deal includes a generous package of technology transfers and finance.

In the latest sign India wants to appear flexible ahead of the December negotiations in Copenhagen on cutting climate-harming emissions, he also said that New Delhi would no longer insist on 40 percent cuts in emissions by 2020.

Many countries are unwilling to commit to cuts before knowing the position of the United States, the world's biggest emitter per capita, where legislators are unlikely to pass laws outlining their promises on carbon cuts until next year.

Developing countries such as India and China are among the most threatened by climate change, but their huge populations mean they will still be heavily reliant on burning fossil fuels to try to lift millions out of poverty. (ANI)

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