Sushma Swaraj says India will ‘work above and beyond’ Paris climate deal to prevent global warming
The external affairs minister said India was at the forefront of the debate on environment and development.
India on Wednesday reaffirmed its commitment to the landmark Paris climate agreement, and said it was willing to “work above and beyond” the pact to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, PTI reported.
During a leadership summit on environment pact at the United Nations, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said India had been at the forefront of the debate on environment and development. Swaraj, participating in the UN meet hosted by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, said India was willing to work “above and beyond” the Paris agreement.
The summit was presided by French President Emmanuel Macron. External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said, “India takes the climate change issue very seriously.”
These statements come at a time when there is a lot of uncertainty over US’ role in the deal. In June, President Donald Trump had announced that the US was withdrawing from the deal. Trump had at that time said that the pact gave undue advantage to countries like India and China. Later, the Trump administration said the country would only stay in the deal if it got more “favourable terms”.
India, the world’s third largest carbon polluter, and more than 190 other nations reached a pact in December 2015 to prevent a rise in the global average temperature. Under the deal, all signatory countries are required to keep global warming within 2 degrees Celsius of pre-industrial levels. The deal replaced the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, and was ratified in October 2016.
During the day, Swaraj had a series of bilateral meetings with leaders from Mexico, Norway and Belgium wherein focus was primarily on bilateral relations, She also called on Mauritius Prime Minister Pravind Jugnauth.