India today said it participated “constructively” in the crucial climate change conference here to ensure that actions are based on the principles of equity and climate justice.
Building on the momentum created in the last one year, countries at the Marrakesh climate change summit on Friday agreed to conclude the framing of rules for the implementation of Paris agreement by 2018.
India said in association with developing countries, it was able to ensure that climate actions are based on the principles of equity and common but differentiated responsibilities (CBDR) and climate justice.
The conference concluded on November 18 with the main thrust to develop rules for operationalising the Paris agreement and advance work on Pre-2020 actions, India said.
“India, led by Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave, participated constructively in association with developing countries to ensure that climate actions are based on the principles of equity and CBDR and climate justice,” an Environment Ministry statement said.
“The Paris Agreement has clearly recognised the principle of differentiation between developed and developing countries and the current round was focused on operationalising it in rules pertaining to adaptation, mitigation, finance, technology transfer, capacity building and transparency frameworks,” it said.
After two weeks of negotiations, the conference also underscored the urgent need for early action on the part of developed countries to make emission cuts in accordance to their commitments in the Kyoto protocol which still has four years to go before its expiry in 2020.
Paris agreement finalised in December last year entered into force in less than a year and the summit also welcomed it.
The conference, which was held amid reports that US under Donald Trump could pull out from the Paris pact, saw the passing of a document in which parties agreed to meet again in 2017 to “review progress”.
The conference saw a political call — Marrakesh Action Proclamation — being given asking countries to combat climate change as a matter of “urgent priority” while noting that climate is warming at an “alarming and unprecedented” rate.
“The Marrakesh Action proclamation for our climate and sustainable development captured the sense of urgency to take action on climate change while ensuring sustainable development,” the statement said.
“It initiated work on adaptation fund to serve the Paris agreement. The Pre-2020 actions including mobilisation of USD 100 billion per year and other support to developing countries was a key element of this proclamation,” it said.
India had earlier welcomed the proclamation, saying that most of its demands including the issue of providing finance to developing nations to tackle climate change has been incorporated and the country will continue to push its agenda as per the Paris agreement.
Noting that there were many efforts to derail the process here, Environment Minister Dave had said despite being held right after Paris, the Marrakesh conference has stuck to the right direction which is its success.
India had pushed for inclusion of sustainable lifestyle with minimum carbon footprint and a clear cut mention of flow of funds in the draft of the political proclamation which was earlier made.
India today said it participated in the Facilitative Dialogue on Pre 2020 actions at the conference and highlighted various time bound actions that can be taken to bridge the emission gap and provide accelerated support to developing countries.
“Overall, the outcomes represent a forward movement in the climate actions especially on the implementation front,” the statement said.
India said its pavilion was the centre of attraction and received wide acclamation. Over 20 side events were held on India’s action on climate change with broad participation from different ministries, civil society, NGOs, industry among others.
India climate experts, however, said that the conference ended without making any breakthroughs under critical agenda items including agriculture, finance, adaptation and pre-2020 actions.
They said that COP 22 was named as ‘COP of Action’ but ended up being ‘COP of Distraction’ primarily because of US elections results.
As far as India was concerned, deputy director general CSE Chandra Bhushan said the country had no clear position regarding issues affecting its poor, including agriculture, adaptation and loss and damage.
“India did not contribute much to the discussions on the issues that affect its poor and neither the Indian negotiators were willing to openly explain their position on these issues,” Bhushan said.
“It publicised sustainable lifestyle and environmental justice. However, it was found wanting and there was no elaboration of what it actually meant by these two concepts,” he said.