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Climate change: Pachauri says all eyes on G-8 summit

Dharam Shourie in New York | July 01, 2008 13:49 IST

Ahead of the meeting of leaders of eight industrialised nations in Japan, UN scientist R K Pachauri has said that there had been 'no major breakthroughs' on climate change since the creation of the Bali action plan, and now 'all eyes are focused on the G-8 summit.'

Pachauri, chief of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, said in the effort to structure a new climate change regime by 2009, there had been no major breakthroughs since the creation of the Bali action plan, but 'all eyes are focused on the G-8 summit' of industrialised countries.

The Bali action plan was adopted as a two-year process to finalise a building agreement on Climate change at a UN conference in Indonesia last year December.

Pachauri warned that global warming has resulted in an average temperature increase of 0.74 degrees Celsius in the last century and the sea level has climbed 17 centimetres.

"But the good news is that the cost of taking action is really not all that high," he told reporters on Monday.

One scenario assessed by the IPCC showed that limiting temperature surges to 2 to 2.4 degrees Celsius would cost at most 3 per cent of global GDP by 2030, 'but that is really the upper limit as a matter of fact,' he said.

But he emphasised that the cost could be negative once the co-benefits including in the healthcare sector are factored in. This means the world might actually gain by taking some of the measures.

Seizing the window of opportunity to take decisive action is key, said Pachauri, who was a co-laureate of last year's Nobel Peace Prize.

"We have up to 2015 by when we could allow emissions to increase," he said, adding the more rapid their decline, the more that severe impacts could be avoided.

"We fail on one, we fail on both," Pachauri added.

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