US President Barack Obama warned Tuesday that the world does not “stand a chance against climate change” unless developing countries such as India reduce their dependence on fossil fuels.
“I know the argument made by some, that it’s unfair for countries like the United States to ask developing nations and emerging economies like India to reduce your dependence on the same fossil fuels that helped power our growth for more than a century,” Obama said in New Delhi.
“But here’s the truth: even if countries like the United States curb our emissions, if growing countries like India – with soaring energy needs – don’t also embrace cleaner fuels, then we don’t stand a chance against climate change,” he added in a speech on the last day of a visit to India.
India has so far baulked at committing itself to major cuts in carbon emissions ahead of a UN climate summit in Paris in December, arguing that it will not set itself targets that undermine efforts to end poverty.
But Obama, whose visit has been designed at forging what he has called a “global partnership” with India, says that partners share responsibilities.
“Being global partners also means confronting the urgent global challenge of climate change,” said the US president.
“With rising seas, melting Himalayan glaciers, more unpredictable monsoons, and cyclones getting stronger – few countries will be more affected than India.”