Ahead of the Paris Climate Change Conference, the White House has announced that US President Barack Obama will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the summit. This meeting will be part of an effort to forge a strong global agreement on climate change, the White House said.
The Obama-Modi meeting will take place on November 30, the opening day of the Paris climate change conference. The US President will also meet Chinese President Xi Jinping at the start of the two-week climate summit, Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes told reporters in Washington.
He said the US “wants to send a clear signal” in meetings with China, India and France that it will be working with the “key players” for a strong international agreement on climate change.
“We have been engaging with India throughout the year in determining how they can contribute constructively to a successful outcome in Paris,” Rhodes said.
PM Modi and President Obama have discussed climate change several times in their past meetings. The issue came up for discussion when Obama visited India and also when Modi was in New York for the UNGA.
In all, both leaders met six times since 2014.
“We need to have the broadest set of countries engaged in this if it’s going to be successful. That was the lesson from Copenhagen, which is that if you restrict this to a certain form, you will likely be limited to the Kyoto countries or even a small number of countries….And it’s not simply a question of the US coming to the table, it’s a question of whether China and India and Brazil and other major emitters are a part of this framework,” he said.
Rhodes also said that cooperation from major emitters like India and China is “key to the success of the Paris Summit on climate change”.
Rhodes also called for having very strong transparency and accountability provisions to determine if countries are standing by their commitments to ensure emissions reduction to combat climate change.
(With inputs from PTI)