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This House Believes India Should Slow Its Economic Growth To Help The World's Climate Should Developing Countries Mitigate Climate Change

2369 words - 9 pages

This house believes India should slow its economic growth to help the world’s climateProposing the motionThe latest Met office climate predictions show that by 2100, temperatures are likely to rise to around 2 °C above pre-industrial levels. This prediction assumes large and early cuts of green house gas emissions are implemented. If no action is taken to check the rise in green house gas emissions, temperatures are more likely to rise by 5°C (Pope 2008).It has been nigh on impossible for global leaders to create a solid framework to tackle climate change. Leaders are often unable to agree on a global resolution to mitigate climate change and so the process drags on year after year. The climate change conference which took place in Poznan, 1-12th December 2008 was a typical example of why countries are unable to agree on any sort of global framework. The aim of the conference was to shape an international response to climate change. However, India merely used the conference to ‘reaffirm its prioritisation of economic development and the responsibility of developed countries to address climate change’ (Lewer 2008). When a country of India’s size and growing influence, does not even wish to accept any responsibility for climate change mitigation, it is easy to see why a global response seems near impossible.It is understandable to see why India believes they should not be burdened with the costs of mitigating climate change. India’s policy on Climate change could be simplified as follows:•The developed world is responsible for causing climate change, thus the mitigation of climate change should be their responsibility.•Agreeing to cut green-house gas emissions would be harmful to economic growth.•Compared to the developed world, India’s levels of emissions are still relatively small.India’s policy of refusing to accept emissions cuts is intended to benefit India and its people. In reality this policy stance does not favour India’s best interests, and is economically illogical and jeopardizes the future of India.Common but Differentiated ResponsibilityWhen addressing climate change, India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh emphasises the ‘principle of common but differentiated responsibility’ (Kubota and Fujioka 2008; Singh 2008). In Lehman’s terms, Singh believes that developed countries should foot the bill for reversing climate change. Unfortunately for Singh, the evidence suggests that India will be faced with massive costs if global emissions continue to rise unchecked. Various reports have estimated that India would be one of the world’s biggest losers from climate change. A Lehmans Brothers report estimated that a 2.5°C rise in global temperature would cost the Indian economy some 5% of its GDP (Llewellyn 2007). A report by the Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, valued the loss at 9% (Sethi 2007). The reality is that poorer regions...

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