Nuclear, solar power can ensure energy security: Shyam Saran

July 26th, 2008 - 11:29 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, July 26 (IANS) Nuclear and solar power are the only two sources that can ensure energy security for India in the coming decades and also minimise greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, Shyam Saran, the prime minister’s special envoy on climate change, said here Saturday. Speaking on ‘Climate Change: Will India’s Growth Story Confront a New Constraint?’, Saran made a strong case for pushing solar and nuclear energy as the best way to reduce India’s dependence on imported oil, gas and coal as well as for reducing its GHG emissions that lead to global warming. The talk was organised by the Public Diplomacy Division of the Ministry of External Affairs.

Saran described at length how industrialised countries were responsible for almost all the carbon dioxide added to the Earth’s atmosphere since the start of the Industrial Age and how they were continuing to do so despite signing the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. Carbon dioxide is the main GHG.

In this backdrop, Saran strongly criticised industrialised countries led by the US for repeatedly insisting that India and China would have to reduce their GHG emissions for the success of any new global treaty on the subject.

“We must not accept a global climate change regime which is inequitable and imposes unfair economic burden on us as a developing country,” he emphasised.

However, Saran said that it was in India’s own interests of both energy security and controlling climate change to move towards a low carbon economy. He described how India would become far more dependent on imported energy sources (oil, gas and coal) by 2030, and how this was dangerous for the country’s energy security.

That was why India’s National Action Plan on Climate Change had placed so much emphasis on solar energy, Saran explained. “And now that the nuclear deal is back on track, that can form the second pillar of India’s long-term energy strategy, that has the added advantage of being the best way to combat climate change.”

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