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BASIC Nations 'Very Happy' With Cancun Texts: Ramesh

PTI 11 Dec 2010, 13:30:20 IST
Cancun, Dec 11 (PTI) India today said that the majoremerging economies were "very happy" with the two draft texts prepared by climate negotiators from almost 200 nations on the Kyoto Protocol and a long-term action to combat climate change.

Following the circulation of two texts, still remain to be adopted by the 193 countries in some formal manner,Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh said that the outcome was"acceptable" to India.

"We have a Cancun agreement," he said, noting that the BASIC countries were "very happy" with the text.The BASIC countries (BASIC or G4) are a bloc of fourlarge developing countries - Brazil, South Africa, India and China - formed by an agreement on 28 November 2009.

Over the past two weeks, there has been concern that the talks might fail since Japan and Russia have said that they will not commit to the second period of the Kyoto Protocol, which is the only treaty on climate change that puts legally binding cuts on developed countries.

In the last few days, negotiators have struggled to formulate text that accommodates the desire of the majority of developing countries to continue with the Kyoto Protocol, and also not to force Japan and Russia into a second commitment period.

The first commitment period, which expires at the end of 2012, requires industrialized countries to reduce their greenhouse gases by 5 per cent from 1990 levels.
The text currently calls for the parties to act so that "there is no gap between the first and second commitment periods."

Observers here have interpreted the text differently -some groups have said that it is a "weak" text that will eventually lead to the death of Kyoto Protocol, while otherslook at it workable "compromise" for the moment.

Observers also said that while the two texts may be considered a significant political step in  moving the negotiations forward, they were not really helpful in combating climate change and the compromises were not rooted in what the science demanded.

"It operationalized the Copenhagen Accord and considering the Copenhagen Accord pledges are not adequate this is disastrous for the environment," said Chandra Bhushan from the Centre of Science and Environment.The reaction to the text of the long-term plan to combat climate change has also been mixed.

Ramesh said that many of India's contribution had been incorporated in the text including the International Consultation and Analysis, which is a transparency mechanism to review whether developing countries are carrying out theirdomestic mitigation actions.