PM Modi to attend crucial UN Climate Change Summit in Paris today

Valletta (Malta): Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday has reached Paris for the 12-day UN climate change summit to face what is being seen as one of the big diplomatic challenges for India. Nearly 150 global leaders are gathering in Paris for the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties. The meet hopes to bring all on board and develop a firm policy for containing emissions that are spiking global warming.

"Bonjour Paris! PM @narendramodi arrives in France to attend @COP21," External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Vikas Swarup tweeted as Modi arrived in the French capital.

The Prime Minister will inaugurate the Indian pavilion at the climate change summit on Monday and will address leaders and delegates from across the world at the summit. He will also jointly launch the India-mooted International Solar Alliance with French President Francois Hollande on Monday.
India's harmony with nature, climate action plans to curb carbon emissions as well as an e-book depicting how the country has been environmentally conscious over the ages will be showcased at its pavilion to be inaugurated by Modi at the crucial summit.

Indian Environment Ministry officials said that Modi will inaugurate the pavilion by switching on the water screen which will have the message of "just climate action" on it.

A large number of Heads of State, Heads of Government and Ministers of several countries along with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon are expected to be present at the launch of the International Solar Alliance, a concept conceived by Modi.

Modi would join an estimated 150 Presidents, Prime Ministers and Heads of States at the crucial climate summit.

During this visit, PM Modi will also attend 'Mission Innovation' being hosted by US President Barack Obama. Prior to his departure, the Prime Minister said in his monthly radio programme 'Mann Ki Baat', "The whole world is worried about climate change. There are discussions everywhere over it and concerns are being expressed. The temperature of the Earth should not increase now. It is the responsibility and concern of all."

The Paris climate change conference also known as Conference of Parties (CoP-21) is set to kick off on Monday in Paris and will go on till December 11.

Paris climate conference will for the first time in over 20 years of UN negotiations, aim to achieve a legally binding universal agreement on climate, with the aim of keeping global warming below 2°C.

Earlier, Commonwealth countries pledged billions to fight global warming with Canada topping the list, announcing a USD 2 billion assistance to help poor countries in limiting green-house gas emissions.

India pledged USD 2.5 million for the small states in the Commonwealth to help them combat climate change.

"India has announced 2.5 million dollars for the Commonwealth small states trade finance facility. As you are aware, Commonwealth has 31 small states as its members out of the 53 countries and trade finance is very important to them," External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Vikas Swarup said.

Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat on Sunday unveiled a USD 1 billion Commonwealth Green Finance Facility to support environmental projects within the 53-nation bloc.

Separately, the UK has committed 21 million pounds for disaster management and 5.5 million pounds for the ocean-based economy.

Australia has committed USD 1 million for a new Commonwealth idea -- a Climate Finance Access Hub.

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