After lot of uncertainty, G8 Summit in Heiligendamm has finally agreed on a deal on climate change with the group of developed nations agreeing to make ‘substantial’ cuts in carbon emissions. The major greenhouse gases emitters–including the United States–will ‘consider’ cutting their emissions to 50 per cent by 2050.
The US President George Bush has also confirmed that the US will take part in negotiations for the successor of the Kyoto Protocol that ends in 2012. However, Bush reiterated his stand that the US will be part of the treaty only if India and China, the two emerging economies that contribute significantly to the global emissions, are party to the climate change policy.
A day ago, the US had denied to commit to any set target for carbon dioxide emissions. Other G8 nations wanted to commit on 50 per cent emissions reduction by 2050 and restrict the global warming to 2 degree Celsius.
With the US declaring its stand of not being party to any agreement on climate change to excludes India and China makes it quite unlikely that the major contributor will be a party to the Kyoto successor. China has recently announced its first climate policy stating that it is concerned about the climate change but will not take any step to improve the climate situation at the cost of its economic growth. India is also not willing to agree to any cap on its carbon emissions.
Since the US wants India and China to be a party to the climate agreement and the two developing nations dead against any emissions cap, the environment will have to suffer more. The major polluter will continue to evade emissions cut without accepting its responsibility to improve the health of the planet.
In this tussle between the world’s superpower and the developing countries, the planet will continue to suffer inching close to a climate catastrophe. The major losers will be the poor creatures and people who are least responsible for the climate change.