Sunday, July 19, 2009

A Sustainably Green India Means Social Justice, an Ethical Choice for Our Democracy

My published New York Times
Comment #155.
July 20th, 2009
9:10 am
Chennai, Tamil Nadu India
July 20th, 2009
10:57 am

So India's Govt. just stated that it will not sign any agreement that will set limits on its greenhouse gas and carbon emissions (see link below).

"We are simply not in a position to take over legally binding emission reduction targets,” Jairam Ramesh, Minister of State for Environment and Forests, declared at Hillary Clinton's news conference. “That does not mean that we are oblivious of our responsibilities.” Mr. Ramesh, WE the People will see, if our elected government is indeed not oblivious to its responsibilities to protect and preserve Our Living Mutual Earth.

So India just said a qualified NO. Well, OK. But will INDIA say YES to charting an independent and ETHICAL course on creating a green and sustainable India? This is for us, WE the People of India.

That is what India needs urgently to DO, not just talk, DO.

A Sustainably Green India Can Contribute to Social Justice For All Indians and for all People.

If you live in India as I do five months every year, you would quickly realize that the quality of life of every Indian, particularly the very poor, would be greatly improved by reducing environmental pollution of every sort.

India cannot afford to increase its greenhouse gases or its carbon footprint. The health and economic well-being of every Indian is on the line as the Himalayan glaciers recede, our monsoons more irregular, our rivers heavily polluted and poor Indians throughout our nation-state suffer water scarcity/ lack of food security for their absolute minimum daily needs.
A polluting environment directly causes health problems, especially for our poorest and most vulnerable people..

Propoor social justice
demands reduction of both greenhouse gases and carbon emissions. The heavily subsidized middle class and private industry in India both need to do much, much more without whining that it is being bullied by the big emitters of the G3 or the G5 or whatever. India does not need to sign anything at the behest of the self-serving, now suddenly righteous BIG EMITTERS, The US and Europe, but India does need to be proactive, initiate acyion responsibly to significantly lessen environmental pollution generated in and from India, across India. Let us clean up our own house by taking responsibility.

Let India prioritize development over growth, social justice over consumerism.

India's elites need to lose their colonized, dependent, caste-driven inequality mindset and work hard to engage in longterm planning to show IMMEDIATE measurable results that make India sustainably green and a responsible resident of our MUTUAL earth. This is NOT about bullying by the industrial powers, but about India making ethical environmental choices that are good for the most vulnerable in India, the Global South of which it is a part, and the whole world.

Chithra KarunaKaran

Ethical Democracy As Lived Practice
NYTimes copyright
Meeting Shows U.S.-India Split on Emissions
Published: July 19, 2009