Wednesday, July 2, 2008

You Go First

Posted by Teresa at 2:59 PM
Via Hugh Hewitt

Here's an interesting interview from a BBC July 1st podcast about India
and climate change:


BBC reporter: So does he think this is the right plan for India?

Dr. Rajendra Pachauri: I think so, absolutely, because you know, it has the
right level of ambition, it’s oriented towards what would be of benefit to
Indian society. At the same time, it tackles an important global challenge.
So I think overall, the trust is excellent.

BBC Reporter: You say you’re happy with the plan overall, but there is a
lack of specifics, isn’t there? There’s a lack of time frames, and there’s also
a lack of any kind of commitment to actually restrict or reduce India’s
emissions of carbon dioxide. Isn’t that all worrying?

Dr. Rajendra Pachauri: Well, not really. I mean, come to think of it. It’s a
country where 400 million people don’t have access to electricity or any
form of modern supply of energy. So you really can’t put in any
restrictions,
particularly since the developed world has not
shown any major commitment
to bring about a reduction. So
you
know, I think one has to be realistic.

BBC Reporter: Well, I know, but that’s all very well from the sort
of moral justice
point of view. But I mean, the fact is that energy
consumption in India is
expected to quadruple, isn’t it, over the
next generation.
And the fact is, probably that most of that electricity is
going to be generated from coal-fired power stations. So overall, global levels
of carbon dioxide are going to shoot up, even if many Indian villages don’t have
access.

Dr. Rajendra Pachauri: Undoubtedly so. Would one suggest that we
deprive India of the benefits of development and supply of energy,
which
the rest of the world enjoys 20 times larger magnitude?

BBC Reporter: No, but then, how does one square the circle, sir? Because the
prime minister once again repeated his pledge that Indian emissions of carbon
dioxide per capita would not exceed those of developed countries. If there
are three billion Indians and Chinese people consuming the amount of energy
that Americans do at the moment, the planet is doomed, isn’t it?

Pachauri: Well, then, that’s precisely why you really need major reductions
in the developed countries.

So he's basically admitting we can't over regulate India because it will stifle growth
but developed countries can be regulated. I completely understand that India shouldn't
be denied resources. How about this: Let's not over regulate developing or developed
countries. We need vibrant economies in order to fund research and development
for green technologies and regulating greenhouse emissions isn't going to help.

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