Don’t grow the way US did: Jeffrey Sachs to India

August 4th, 2011 - 5:57 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 4 (IANS) India and China should not grow the American way and must pay adequate attention to the environment with proper policy to guide future action by both policymakers and stake-holders, green evangelist and economist Jeffrey Sachs has said.

“The main message is don’t follow our (American) way,” Sachs, a renowned American economist and director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, said referring to the fossil-fuel based growth that has powered the US and other developed economies.

Sachs, who was speaking at a summit on clean energy organised by the New Indian Express and Columbia University, was critical of the way successive US governments had only paid lip-service to environmental concerns and had not framed an effective energy policy.

Talking of the exponential growth being experience by China and India, Sachs said the growing energy needs of the two economies would add more pressure to the global environment and that the governments in these countries needed to take a different approach to supplying this energy.

“China has already become the largest emitter of green house gases,” said Sachs.

“We will reach tipping points in the earth’s systems that will prove to be unmanageable for use and we are not planning a way out.

With the levels of carbon dioxide and other pollutants increasing at an alarming level across the globe, Sachs said current efforts at drawing more energy from renewable sources were only a small bit of what should be done and was not making much of a difference.

“We are making very little headway. With all the initiatives that are taking place they do not add up quantitatively to what we need,” said Sachs.

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