The Indian government and climate activists are pushing back against criticism that the Indian nation is fudging its numbers on climate change. India says it is being unfairly targeted and is looking to underscore the differences between India and other nations who have come out with highly-publicized amounts of greenhouse gas emissions.
Emissions maps that India released on May 9, the first day of a United Nations climate conference in Bonn, Germany, were met with backlash. Many environmental groups demanded that India update its emissions data. The government said that its data is reliable.
“We have been blamed for the climate crisis without saying anything,” said Rathin Roy, India’s climate change ambassador at the COP 26 meeting, according to The Guardian.
The Indian government also said it is a victim of the global warming disaster and not a contributor.
According to The Guardian, Roy also said: “India is not contributing to the crises of global warming and is suffering today from the consequences of climatic changes.”
Experts say the real “wildcard” in climate talks is whether other developing nations will participate or remain “apathetic” as wealthier nations like China and the United States step up their leadership.
According to The Guardian, India contributed 1.4 percent of global emissions in 2014, which was more than several European Union countries, which came in with 1.2 percent of emissions.
The Associated Press reports that India is in the midst of building 175 nuclear power plants that are expected to help it meet a large share of its domestic energy needs. The AP reports that that is in stark contrast to the United States, where President Donald Trump announced in May that it would pull out of the 2015 Paris climate accord, calling it “one of the worst deals ever negotiated.”