Reason Writers Around Town: Shikha Dalmia on India's Foolish Global Warming Wager


India has long insisted that since rich, developed countries created the global warming problem, they're the ones that should deal with it. Indian Enviornmental Minister Jairam Ramesh told Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as much when she broached the subject of India accepting legally binding emissions cuts during her visit to New Delhi this past summer. But now India is singing a different tune. Why?

For a very lopsided reason, explains Reason Foundation Senior Analyst Shikha Dalmia—a native of India—in her latest column in the Wall Street Journal.

Read all about it here.


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  1. Considering the fact that the Ganges, sacred holy river of the Hindoos, is an open sewer, the Indians don’t have a lot of credibility on “eco-issues” as far as I can tell.

    1. And what does that have to do with anything?

      1. It is called hypocrisy.

        Kind of like a supporter of a handgun ban actually having a detail of armed bodyguards.

        1. No, not really. It just means that India has two at least environmental problems, and Shikha Dalmia has written about a plan to combat one of them. India’s been making plans to clean up the Ganga since Independence, but shockingly all that legislative and bureaucratic effort has yielded few results. The emission control legislation will likely have similar results, and also screw India’s poor further. But that does not mean it is hypocritical.

  2. I think the solution to this “developed” versus “developing” countries debate is to make carbon targets on a “per person” basis. Rather than saying that countries should target reductions from their current usage, a fair formula for budgeting carbon per citizen can be used as a target that all countries shoot for.

    This would, of course, place the greatest pressure on the already developed countries which have already exceeded the likely figure, while placing pressure on developing countries to find ways to stay under the target.

    1. Wouldn’t that conflict with those who say that the best way to reduce carbon footprint is to reproduce less?

      Per unit of territory would work, but provide another incentive for warfare. Maybe a hybrid of the two.

    2. I think the solution to this “developed” versus “developing” countries debate is to make carbon targets on a “per person” basis.

      Rich people can pay to stay out of hell. How well did it work out the first time we tried this?

      1. Not sure how apt that analogy is…

  3. My point is this: A vastly greater marginal gain would be realized by cleaning up the Ganges than by imposing restrictions on carbon emissions.

    1. No arguments there.

      1. There is no plausible way to argue with that since the Ganges is badly polluted with real pollutants while CO2 remains a non-pollutant despite what corrupt politicians would like for us to believe. To see a good sampling of sheeple who believe that CO2 is a pollutant or do not know CO2 from ‘toxic animal waste’, or AGW from ‘the weather changes’, look here:

        I think the first guy to comment on this video posts here quite often, his name is Tony.

        1. Amazing how she walked around NYC, and all she could find were Brits to talk to.

    2. The added bonus; it would be vastly cheaper.

  4. And- unlike some people, I do not believe (government) resources are limitless.

    1. There are those who do not believe (government) resources are limitless. Now let me be clear. Beginning today, the printing presses will be operating 24/7. And the middle class will not see a dime of tax increases to cover the printing costs. The pressworkers will be paid with the very script they are printing. Thank you, and may god bless me.

  5. I think the solution to this “developed” versus “developing” countries debate is to make carbon targets on a “per person” basis chuck the whole idiotic AGW/carbon ratining thing.

    But that’s just me. ‘Cause its a scam and all.

    1. ratining – is that the process of turning carbon into rats?


      Well, if you don’t believe in the problem, it is unlikely you would see the need for a solution. Most people seem to recognize the problem and are looking for a solution.

  6. But the sheeple still believe and we can’t disappoint the sheeple, so let’s kill carbon tax schemes, tell them now that it is the coming ice age once again, but throw in a new spin and tell them UFOs are causing it. The only cure of course will be to drive bigger SUVs and buy bigger HDTVs. But please let’s choose a new poster boy, cause the Algore is just getting too fat and creepy looking these days.

  7. Ms Dalmia embarrasses herself by not mentioning nuclear power.

    Thankfully, the Indians themselves are not so limited in their search for solutions:

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