STATEMENT BY MR. NIRUPAM SEN,
PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE, ON THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN ENERGY, SECURITY AND CLIMATE AT THE UN SECURITY COUNCIL ON APRIL 17, 2007
Your Excellency, Madam President,
Please accept our warmest congratulations to a fellow Commonwealth country on having the Presidency of the Council and our appreciation of the manner in which it is conducting the proceedings. We are delighted that you are personally chairing today’s discussions. Climate change issues loom large in today’s global environment agenda. This issue was in the forefront in 1992 when it was included on the agenda of the Rio Summit on Environment and Development. Consideration of climate change received much-needed momentum with the adoption of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and, thereafter, through the Kyoto Protocol agreed in 1997. The international community needs to be vigilant to moves that would “make global warming [debate on climate change issues] cool again”.
2. We have read with interest and attention the UK Concept Paper on Energy, Security and Climate. We must confess, with all respect, that we have some major conceptual difficulties. We of course know the obvious: climate change is not a threat in the context of Article 39, nor can we contemplate Article 41 measures! High per capita carbon emitters are in debt to those with low per capita carbon emissions because they are exploiting much more than their share of environmental space, space in the carbon sink that does not belong to them. An international economic system that has historically been based on externalizing the consequences of pollution is both unjust and impracticable. The main responsibility to take action to reduce the threat of climate change rests with the developed countries, in accordance with the principle of common but differentiated responsibility, as enshrined in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. In this topsy-turvy world, just as the Swiss linear formula in the WTO demands more than full reciprocity from developing countries, so also a careful reading of the Stern Report suggest that between now and 2050, all the GHG abatements proposed would take place in developing countries with developed countries taking credit for GHG reduction effected solely by commercial investments with the increased cost of the energy service being borne by the developing countries and CDM type transfers of credits. This would negate the present global Compact on Climate Change, affect growth in developing countries and increase insecurity.
Stern Report has been read with interest in
4. In marked contrast, a more immediate and quantifiable threat is from possible conflicts arising out of inadequate resources for development and poverty eradication, as well as competition for energy. The concerns of developing countries centre on poverty eradication, a pre-requisite for which is to accelerate growth in developing countries. In turn, by mitigating the potential for conflict, poverty eradication has positive implications for global peace and security. Reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in developed countries also has a potentially significant positive impact on security, by moderating the impetus for privileged access to energy markets. Efforts to impose greenhouse gas commitments on developing countries would simply adversely impact upon the prospects of growth in developing countries. On the other hand, cooperation of developing countries through the carbon market would be conducive to their growth. However, a pre-requisite for GHG abatement in the carbon market is enhanced, legally binding commitments by developed countries. Considered solely in the context of climate change, poverty alleviation is dependent on climate change adaptation measures. Far more important than an uncertain international security threat is the existential threat to many small island developing states and it is, therefore, crucial to mobilize resources and technology for immediate adaptation measures there.
5. To tackle the problems that may lead to conflict, action is required on resource flow, adaptation and technology. Diversion of ODA resources from economic growth and poverty eradication in developing countries is not the answer. Besides new and additional resources, there is need to upscale the realization of resources from the carbon market. Equally there is a need to reach an agreement on IPRs for affordable access to technologies as well as for collaborative R&D to develop technologies based on the resource endowments of developing counties.
is a critical input for development. For
developing countries, a rapid increase in energy use per capita is imperative,
if national development goals, and the Millennium Development Goals, are to be
realized. It is essential that
developing countries have the policy space to address their energy needs in the
light of their individual circumstances.
Concerns over energy security have heightened with the recent sharp
increase in energy prices. This has resulted in a renewed focus on energy
diversification and efficiency. All significant energy sources – whether
conventional or advanced fossil fuels based, or renewable, or clean energy—must
remain in policy reckoning to address energy needs for sustainable development. At a conference in
7. The appropriate forum for discussing issues relating to Climate Change is the UNFCCC. In so far as international peace and security are concerned, developed countries reducing their GHG emissions and energy consumption will considerably reduce such threats through a reduction in the need for privileged access to energy markets. Nothing in the GHG profile of developing countries even remotely reflects a threat to international peace and security, yet their taking on GHG mitigation targets will adversely impact their development (the best adaptation to the adverse impact of Climate Change) and thereby increase insecurity. Conceptually and logically even if one assumes that catastrophic scenarios are certain (which is not the case) the only way to discuss what can be done about the physical effects of Climate Change is in the UNFCCC. The UN Security Council does not have the expertise and may not have the mandate: to make an uncertain long term prospect a security threat amounts to an informal amendment of the Charter. This can only be done through Article 108/109 procedures. While preventing a far reaching adverse change in the climate of the world we have to promote a far reaching change for the better in the climate of the Security Council. This too requires Article 108/109 procedures.
I thank you Madam President.
(With reference to
There has been effective delinking of energy sector
growth from economic growth. In recent years
· In all the major energy intensive sectors – steel, aluminium, fertilizer, paper, cement, levels of energy efficiency are at global levels. Especially in the cement sector, the energy efficiency of Indian plants are among the world’s highest.
· The share of renewables in total primary energy is still at 34%.