India is the most vulnerable country in the world to climate change and should demonstrate leadership to tackle the problem, said former union environment minister Jairam Ramesh. Speaking at the Observer Research Foundation, Mumbai, on the Paris Climate Treaty he mentioned the need for India to shed its old mantras of emission levels per capita being very low and not contribute to global warming.
“We should do what is in our interest and then hold ourselves internationally accountable to it. For the sake of India’s political and economic interest we need to be pragmatic.” he said.
The 10,000 odd Himalayan glaciers are receding which would impact the perennial rivers of north-India. The rising mean sea-levels again would adversely affect the country as it has a 7,500 km coast line. Besides, most of the country’s natural resources required for economic growth are in rich forest areas. He said in the name of Ease of Doing Business, regulations are being eased and environmental concerns are being overlooked.”The most important reason to protect environment is because there is no country in the world that is seeing a demographic expansion which India is witnessing.” he said.