08 April 2009

election manifestos 2009

The elections have brought out manifestos containing green-agendas of various parties. Governments around the world are anxious to know India's position on a global climate treaty that is supposed to be finalised by December 2009. The Congress, the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) have unveiled their manifestos released for the April-May Lok Sabha elections.

"Climate change has now emerged as a serious challenge for the world community. India too has begun to feel its impact in different ways," says the manifesto of the Congress, which leads the United Progressive Alliance government.

It says that the National Action Plan for Climate Change, which Prime Minister Manmohan Singh unveiled last year, "is an acknowledgment of our responsibility to take credible actions within the overall framework of meeting the development aspirations of our people. This action plan will be implemented in letter and spirit".

The BJP manifesto says it will "pursue national growth objectives through an ecologically sustainable pathway that leads to mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions.

"We recognise that containing global warming is essential to protecting life and security of people and environment. Mitigating the threat by building a low carbon economy is the biggest economic opportunity of the 21st century."

Echoing the position taken by the Indian government for a climate treaty, the BJP says it endorses the principle of 'common but differentiated responsibilities' as enshrined in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

"We look at Climate Change in the context of the promises made by the international community for technology transfer and additional financing since Rio which have remained unfulfilled. The BJP will actively pursue the transfer of critical technologies that can have a significant impact on reducing carbon emissions."

The manifesto says the BJP will "lay importance on energy security and sustainable energy pathways by setting clear targets for energy efficiency and renewable energy".

It promises to "provide incentives to encourage institutions and individuals to switch over to energy-saving devices and eco-friendly designs for housing and workplace. Full support will be given for developing low-energy, low-cost technology by both public and private sectors".

The party promises "to invest heavily in developing non-fossil fuel-based clean energy sources, especially for electricity production".

The CPI-M says in its manifesto that it would take "steps to control emission of greenhouse gases through energy efficient technologies and effective regulation" and by promoting solar and other non-conventional energy sources.

Manifesto of BJP includes:
The BJP will pursue national growth objectives through an ecologically sustainable pathway that leads to mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions. We recognise that containing global warming is essential to protecting life and security of people and environment. Mitigating the threat by building a low carbon economy is the biggest economic opportunity of the 21st century.

The BJP endorses the principle of “common but differentiated responsibilities”, as enshrined in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change. We look at ‘Climate Change’ in the context of the promises made by the international community for technology transfer and additional financing since Rio, which have remained unfulfilled.

The BJP will actively pursue the transfer of critical technologies that can have a significant impact on reducing carbon emissions. Bearing in mind concerns on environment and related climate change issues, the BJP will:

1. Give appropriate importance to containing climate change.
2. Lay importance on energy security and sustainable energy pathways by setting clear targets for energy efficiency and renewable energy.
3. Bring about a complete shift in subsidy from chemical fertilisers to rewarding farmers for pursuing conservation and enhancement of local crop varieties, thereby enhancing the conservation of local agro-biodiversity.
4. Offer attractive support prices and incentives for traditional rain-fed crops and promote markets for them. This will be coupled with a decentralised Public Distribution System that will mop up excess production of local food and distribute it among those households that are food deficit locally. A decentralised PDS will be more climate smart since it will eliminate excessive costs of transportation and storage.
5. Revisit laws for protecting forests and reserve parks to make them more effective in preventing encroachment and man-animal conflict. All resources will be provided for protecting forestland and animal reserves; wilful destruction of forests and killing of wildlife for profit or pleasure will fetch stringent punishment.
6. A permanent Task Force will be set up for the protection and preservation of tigers, lions and other wild cats. A separate Task Force will look after the protection and preservation of elephants. A third Task Force will look after bird sanctuaries. They will be duly empowered to take whatever steps are necessary to achieve their goals.
7. Provide incentives to encourage institutions and individuals to switch over to energy-saving devices and eco-friendly designs for housing and workplace. Full support will be given for developing low-energy, low-cost technology by both public and private sectors. A Group of Experts will be set up to formulate target driven objectives towards this end.
8. Encourage citizens’ participation in protecting the environment and curbing pollution. Schools will be involved in promoting environment and ecology related issues among children.
9. Adopt a mission-mode approach to clean all rivers.
10. Launch a national programme for citizens’ participation in reforestation, agroforestry and social forestry by planting a billion trees every year.
11. Importance given to programmes to arrest the melting of Himalayan glaciers from which most major rivers in North India originate.

Excerpts political party manifestos with regard to environment and climate change these are the original excerpts from party manifestos, just an effort to bring to focus the stand of various political parties on this issue.

Manifesto of The CONGRESS PARTY includes:
We will protect India’s natural environment and take steps to rejuvenate it. The Indian National Congress has declared the sacred Ganga as a “national river”. The Ganga River Basin Authority has been established with the Prime Minister at its head for ensuring that development needs are met in an ecologically sustainable manner. This Authority will be accorded the highest priority. Water security is of paramount concern to the Indian National Congress and steps will be taken to enhance it measurably for local communities.

India has an enormously rich biodiversity that is under threat on account of various reasons. The Indian National Congress commits itself to strengthening people’s movements whose objective will be to protect and preserve our bio-resources and ensure their sustainable use.

Climate change has now emerged as a serious challenge for the world community. India too has begun to feel its impact in different ways. The Congress-led UPA government has already unveiled a National Action Plan for Climate Change. It is an acknowledgment of our responsibility to take credible actions within the overall framework of meeting the development aspirations of our people for higher economic growth and a higher standard of living. This action plan will be implemented in letter and spirit.


Manifesto of THE CPI(M) includes:
• Making the Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA) process transparent, accountable and independent of vested interests; Reviewing the EIA Notification, 2009
• Undertaking steps to control emission of greenhouse gases through energy efficient technologies and effective regulation; Promoting solar and other non-conventional energy sources
• Increasing central allocations for Natural Calamity Relief Fund; States to have more powers in tackling natural calamities and disasters
• Checking pollution of rivers and other water bodies through effective regulation
• Implementing the Coastal Zone Regulation Act and the Wetlands
Regulatory Authority in ways as to promote long-term interests of the people and of the environment Water Resources
• A National Water Policy to be formulated to enhance water
availability for domestic use, irrigation and industry; provision of potable drinking water to all habitations to be accorded priority
• Curbing privatization and commercialization of water resources; tackling depletion of ground water through greater regulation

2 comments:

jai said...

keep writing! you seem to churn posts as fast as your hand can type..
and why would you not write about the agriculture part of hte manifestos..
jai

Akhila Vijayaraghavan said...

working on something agriculturally inclined soon :)