Instead of being a forum to take concrete decisions to tackle the menace of global warming, 'Copenhagen-2009' has become a political hot potato at the international level, with no country wanting to play spoiled sport.
A TRIP to the capital of Denmark could not have been more controversial. Instead of being a forum to take concrete decisions to tackle the menace of global warming, “Copenhagen-2009” has become a political hot potato at the international level, with no country wanting to play spoiled sport. As far as India is concerned, the Environment Minister may have tried his best to satisfy the opposition, all his reasoning has gone in vain with many like the Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha, Arun Jaitley, terming the voluntary emission intensity cut as a part of the “Bandwagon Effect.” To add insult to injury, the IIT-Bombay alumnus has also been accused of selling the nation under pressure from Washington DC.
With the political temperature in Delhi rising, the Parliament has seen several riveting discussions on the issue in the last few days. The debates from the oppositions have largely hovered around denigrating Jairam Ramesh and his policies, and have turned out to be yet another potent way of government bashing.Under such dubious circumstances, one is bound to think whether India is treading the correct path, or is it just being bullied by a nation, which has turned out to be one of its best compatriots in modern times. The answer, though complicated, still revives some optimism.In a precarious situation where our planet is going through extraordinary situations, accentuated by melting of glaciers, extinction of wildlife and reducing water bodies, it is the duty of every single nation to raise their hands and take appropriate steps in the right direction. More than political bickering, it needs a synergized effort to combat this menace, which has already exceeded its stipulated limits. The gravity of the situation, for example, can be determined by the fact that if the current situations remain, the Ganges will become a seasonal river within the next two decades. This calls for a pan-world solution, with participation from all the 190 odd nations on the face of this endangered planet.That said, to bring the world together, it is incumbent upon all the current major powers of the world to come together and break the ice on this issue. In such a scenario, it is quite natural that a nation, which can be easily termed as one of the fastest developing nations in the world will have to take a few initiatives, and an incumbent minister who feels the same, has all the right to take brazen yet broad-minded steps. Besides, India is not alone. Countries like Indonesia and South Africa have already announced similar measures. In short, instead of parochially thinking of economic growth through conventional methods, it is time to envisage the impending disaster which, if not curtailed, will decimate all that has been created till date.By announcing a 20-25 per cent emission intensity cut by 2020, the Minister has only underscored that India’s role on the international platform is no longer limited to being a shadow of Washington DC, but represents the emergence of a nation that realizes its global role and inspires other such nations to come out of their cocooned thinking and think big in terms of the planet that our future generations are going to inherit.As an icing on the cake, this opportunity has given India the credibility that is required for a nation to assert itself as a major international force to reckon with and a potential global leader, which after setting examples in the fields of economics, peace and culture, is ready to take on the task of rejuvenating the environment. It also gives an excellent opportunity for India to develop and harness its renewable resources and decrease its dependence on conventional methods.In short, the verdict, therefore, is a “thumbs up” in favor of Jairam Ramesh. One can only hope that “Copenhagon-2009” turns out to be a fruitful exercise, without undue obduracy from certain suspect nations. As it goes, the best time to tackle global warming was a 10 years ago, the second best is now. Here's wishing all the best to Dr. Manmohan Singh and Jairam Ramesh.