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Prime Minister’s Statement Prior to his Departure for Copenhagen

December 17, 2009

"I am leaving today to attend the 15th Conference of Parties of the United Nations Framework Conference on Climate Change in Copenhagen (UNFCCC).

The UNFCCC and its Kyoto Protocol embody the international agreed regime for addressing the global challenge of climate change. The UNFCCC is founded on the principle of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities. At the 13th Conference of Parties in Bali, the Parties had agreed to launch an Action Plan to enhance the implementation of the UNFCCC. The Bali Action Plan seeks to ensure full, effective and sustained implementation of the UNFCCC through long term cooperative action of the Parties upto and beyond 2012.

It is India’s view that global warming is taking place and taking place here and now and its adverse consequences will impact most heavily on developing countries like India. As a responsible member of the international community, India is therefore fully committed to working with the rest of the world to preserve and protect our environment. This is our common heritage, and this is what we must bequeath to our succeeding generations.

At the same time, climate change cannot be addressed by perpetuating the poverty of the developing countries. Every citizen of the globe has equal entitlement of the global atmospheric space. It is in keeping with this principle that I had earlier announced in Heiligendamm in 2007 that we will maintain our per capita emissions at a level lower than the average per capita emissions of developed countries.

We have, as a responsible member of the international community, announced that we will reduce the emissions intensity of our growth by 20-25% in 2020 as compared to 2005. India has also launched a comprehensive Action Plan on Climate Change and the eight National Missions have been set up. We are willing to do more provided there are credible arrangements to provide both additional financial support as well as technological transfers from developed to developing countries.

I look forward to constructive deliberations in Copenhagen which meet the collective aspirations of all humankind and enable us to move forward in the global efforts to combat climate change.”

New Delhi
December 17, 2009



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