Indian Prime Minister Lends Support To IPCC, Pachauri

Speaking at a development summit, India Prime Minister Manmohan Singh came out in full support of the beleaguered IPCC head Rajendra Pachauri, the first time Singh had addressed the issue after IPCC offered its "regret" on the blunder it committed in predicting that glaciers in the Himalayas would melt away by 2035. The Indian prime minister, who is an economist, said: "Some aspects of the science that is reflected in the work of the IPCC have faced criticism. But this debate does not challenge the core projections of the IPCC about the impact of greenhouse gas accumulations on temperature, rainfall, and sea-level rise. Let me here assert that India has full confidence in the IPCC process and its leadership and will support it in every way that it can."

Singh added: "I share the disappointment of many with the limited achievements of the discussions that took place at Copenhagen. … We have established an Indian Network for Comprehensive Climate Change Assessment, a network of over 120 research institutes, which will bring out regular reports on the impacts of climate change on different sectors and different regions of the country. The first such assessment will be released in November this year. We seek international collaboration to make this network effective. … It is becoming clear that the roots of the problem we face today are in the current patterns of global production and consumption, which are not sustainable. We are living on an overdraft on nature’s resources, and this is already threatening the ecological balance, which is the basis of our survival. We are also establishing a National Institute of Himalayan Glaciology in Dehra Dun, and we look forward to international cooperation in this vital area."