Time to come out of climate change politics

  Tracking MDG-7

Himanshu Shekhar

The seventh Millennium Development Goal (MDG) is to ensure environmental sustainability. Under MDG-7, it was targeted that the principles of sustainable development would be integrated into country policies and programmes to reverse the loss of environmental resources. But, UNDP’s MDG report, 2010 is telling a different story about the efforts of environmental sustainability.

 The report cites, “Global deforestation—mainly the conversion of tropical forests to agricultural land—is slowing, but continues at a high rate in many countries. Over the last decade, about 13 million hectares of forest worldwide were converted to other uses or lost through natural causes each year, compared to 16 million hectares per year in the 1990s.” According to the report, “Ambitious tree-planting programmes in several countries, combined with the natural expansion of forests in some regions, have added more than 7 million hectares of new forest annually. As a result, the net loss of forest area over the period 2000-2010 was reduced to 5.2 million hectares per year, down from 8.3 million hectares per year in 1990-2000.” But, is this slow pace of reduction is enough to achieve MDG-7 by 2015? Needless to say that the slow pace of reduction of deforestation would lead to that situation in which it would be impossible to achieve MDG-7.

In fact, the whole world is indulged in politics over the environment. That’s why we missed the 2010 target of MDG-7. The report says, “world has missed the 2010 target for biodiversity conservation, with potentially grave consequences.” Despite of that world leaders are not ready to take any lesson. Everyone is aware with the happenings of Copenhagen. There was some kind of war was taking place between developed and developing nations. In the process of which, they didn’t reach to an agreement and that summit collapsed.

This is a known fact that America is one of the biggest carbon emitter. America’s per capita carbon emission is 19.1 tonnes. Only Luxemberg is ahead of America with 22.4 tonnes. China’s per capita carbon emission is 4.6 tonnes. India is far behind from developed country with per capita emission of 1.2 tonnes. Despite of these facts, America and other developed nations were trying hard to force developing nation to agree on a binding agreement at Copenhagen and this was one of the main reason behind the collapse of that summit.

It seems that, no one is serious about environment changes and its drastic impact. Most of the biggest polluters of world are not honest vis-à-vis emission reduction just because they think that this will lead to reduction in the rate of industrialization. But, this is the important question that what the human being will do with industrialization when the climate change will make their survival next to impossible. This is high time to think over the seriousness of climate change and take appropriate steps at each and every level. Otherwise, the world will definitely miss MDG-7 and its result will be very horrifying.      

Indian government should act on its own to check the problem of climate change because emission is on the rise and its impact is not invisible now. A number of areas of India are feeling the heat of increased pollution and this is making survival very difficult to residents of concerned areas. It is pertinent to mention that the India’s emission reached to 1.7 billion tonnes in 2007 from 1.2 billion tonnes in 1994, confirming India being among the world’s five biggest carbon polluters. The amount of carbon emissions India added to the atmosphere between 1994 and 2007 was equal to what Australia emits every year. China is the world’s top emitter of greenhouse gases blamed for heating up the planet. The United States is second.

This is the seventh article of a series on MDG. The next will appear on Tuesday.

You can also read previous posts here-

Crisis of HIV and Malaria

Maternal health: Crucial yet ignored

Child mortality reduction still a distant dream

Gender parity unlikely for India

Education is not for all

Poverty reduction remains sluggish

2 thoughts on “Time to come out of climate change politics

  1. Global warming & climate changing is all result of these activities or industrialization which release carbon & such gases which cause holes in ozone layers which protect us from UV rays…but you know India & other developing countries contribution in producing these gases are much less than only USA & China (mentioned by you also)…& they are not at all ready to lower down the production of refrigeration industry as this industry raises their per capita income….So who will going to take the initiative..in this case we Indians are helpless…agreed deforestation is in progress to improve our infrastructure..but that’s what mandatory…So the situation won’t improve without their help….

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