Colonial Climate Change Governance – UPSC GS3

  • The climate change governance framework is colonial in nature and there is need to recognise the inequality of consumption to tackle the climate crisis.
  • Developed countries emitted most, became developed and are still emitting.
  • No space left for developing nations to develop using cheap technologies which are polluting.
Colonial Framework of the Climate Change Governance:
  • Tragedy of Commons:
    • Relentless consumption without regards to biodiversity leading to pollution and adverse impact on “commons” – things that all took granted as a common bounty.
  • Inequality in consumption: 
    • The climate action agenda shifted the objective from equitable consumption to reduction in carbon emissions.
    • Development continues to be about consumption and comfort that rich people and nations enjoy.
  • Failure to distinguish between lifestyle and lifeline use of resource: 
    • Whether a unit of energy lights a poor Indian household or keeps a rich Indian in air-conditioned comfort is irrelevant to climate action warriors.
  • Unipolar focus on technologies:
    • Poor people and poor countries have to access food at affordable prices; but technologies to enable this are polluting.
    • People who earned on polluting fuels are earlier are now advocating low carbon fuels.
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