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Manmohan Singh to Meet UN Chief, Discuss Climate Change

Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh will meet Chinese President Hu Jintao and U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on the sidelines of the 33rd Group of Eight (G-8) Summit on Thursday, besides giving India's viewpoint on greenhouse gas emissions and other aspects of global climate change.

An External Affairs Ministry background paper states that while India has 17 per cent of the world's population, it emits only four per cent of global greenhouse gases, suggesting therefore, that its per capita emissions are small, just one-quarter of the world average, and four per cent of that in the U.S.

On the other hand, India's GDP has exceeded eight per cent a year in the last three years, but the rate of increase in primary energy consumption is pegged at just 2.76 per cent.

What Manmohan Singh may seek from the developed world is freer access to patent protected energy-saving technology when he meets the G-8 leaders on Friday.

German Chancellor and summit host Angela Merkel has been working to get fellow G-8 leaders to agree to limit global warming, and not let temperatures rise more than two degrees Celsius, a plan that would require halving greenhouse emissions by 2050. She has met with a lukewarm response, especially from the U.S., where greenhouse emissions have risen 1.6 per cent a year since 2000, and by two per cent annually as far as the other G-8 countries are concerned.

Dr. Singh is likely to speak about India's own earnestness to raise the efficiency of energy use, drawing attention to the National Environment Policy of 2006, from which several initiatives have flowed.

India has clarified that it will not allow growth and development prospects in the developing world to be undermined or constrained at the cost of greenhouse emissions.

India has blamed the "unsustainable production and consumption patterns" in the developed world for the problem of climate change. The K
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