Modi to Obama: Will fulfill our climate responsibilities

RSTV Bureau

Paris: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Barack Obama in a meeting during CoP 21, UN Climate Change Conference in Paris on Monday. PTI Photo

PM Modi met several leaders on the sidelines of the Paris climate change summit, including US President Barack Obama and Pakistani PM Nawaz Sharif.

In his meeting with Obama, PM Modi discussed climate change along with other ways to deepen bilateral strategic ties between the two countries.

PM Modi assured President Obama that India will fulfill all its responsibilities with regard to climate change.

“India will fulfill expectations from it and its responsibilities…the country is working to take forward development and (protecting) environment together,” PM Modi said at a joint press event with Obama.

President Obama too spoke about the expectations from the Paris meeting. He said the meet should protect the possibility of countries like India to pursue their fight against poverty, but at the same time he also clearly stated that serious climate commitments were absolutely necessary from all parties.

“I want to emphasise that we agree that Paris must recognise and protect the ability of countries like India to pursue the priorities of development, growth, and poverty eradication… At the same time, it also has to reflect serious and ambitious action by all nations to curb their carbon pollution,” Obama said.

The agreement “has to reflect serious and ambitious actions by all countries”, he insisted.

Both Modi and Obama met as part of “Mission Innovation” which was announced by the US earlier.

“And I am proud that after our meeting here we’re going to be attending what we’re calling Mission Innovation, which is a groundbreaking new public-private initiative that will accelerate the pace at which we can develop and deploy clean energy that’s affordable to populations around the world,” said the US President.

Obama also lauded the new Solar Alliance launched jointly by Modi and French President Francois Hollande, saying the initiative is going to “advance the cause not only in India but around the world of accelerating the adaptation of solar energy, which is going to be so important to our clean energy future.”

PM Modi also announced India’s ambitious target of producing 175 GW of renewable energy, a measure which was hugely appreciated by President Obama.

PM Modi also repeatedly stated that climate change was a very important issue for India. “We have kept very big targets,” he announced.

Before his meeting with Obama, PM Modi gave a six-minute speech at the summit, emphasising how vital innovation was and why the Paris climate summit was special.

“We need results and innovation to make energy cheaper and to translate that to the future generations. This is a global responsibility,” PM Modi said in his speech.

(With inputs from PTI)