US environment group seeks India-US cooperation on climate change

Washington, Sep 20 (IANS) A leading US environmental action group has outlined three key areas for India US collaboration: energy efficiency, growing solar energy markets, and preparing communities to sustain the impacts of climate change.

In a letter to the White House Thursday Natural Resources Defence Council (NRDC) asked US President Barack Obama to prioritise climate change during his summit meeting with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here next week.

"The two countries can create public-private partnerships-similar to those that have helped spur innovation and investment in information technology-to help increase energy efficiency in our workplaces, appliances, buildings and cars," NRDC president Frances Beinecke wrote.

"We can promote and enhance the exchange of advanced clean energy technology, like smart grids to make electricity transmission more efficient, and systems to make wind and solar power available to vast reaches of rural India," he said.

In the near term, the two leaders can "cooperate, to mutual advantage, and leapfrog to the next generation of safer chemicals used as refrigerants," Beinecke said.

They can also build on the recent G20 agreement supporting a global phase down of production and consumption of the powerful heat-trapping gases known as hydrofluorocarbons under the Montreal Protocol, he said.

"India is an essential partner in the global effort to stabilise the climate and promote sustainable development," Beinecke wrote to Obama hoping he would "build on the strategic partnership with India to find new energy solutions and move us toward a global green economy."

"Advancing energy efficiency is necessary to help meet energy demand in the United States and rapidly growing Indian cities, improve energy security, and propel both countries forward in the clean energy race," he wrote.

"The United States should work with India to turn these challenges into a business advantage and national opportunity while reducing climate change," Beinecke wrote.


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