National Human Rights Commission Chairman Justice Arun Mishra on Sunday called on developed economies to “shoulder more responsibility for checking climate change without passing the burden of sacrifices only on the developing economies”.
In his message on the occasion of World Environment Day, Justice Mishra said that “the concept of global village can be realised only when the developed economies appreciate the need and aspirations of the people in developing economies to live in a world which is homogenous, and gives equal opportunity to all to realise the rights at par with their fellow human beings in developed nations”.
He underlined that “it’s time to identify and plug gaps and act sternly against violators of norms in implementation of environmental laws”, adding “enforcement of policies the world over and sticking to the commitments made at global summits is of utmost significance for achieving the goal”.
In this regard, he pointed out that India, despite its challenges of development, “has shown the way to the world by making a commitment…to cut green house gas emissions to net zero by 2070”.
“The responsibility is to be shared by the individuals besides the efforts of systems of the governance, including states, municipal authorities, Panchayati Raj Institutions, on war footing,” he said.
Stressing the need for preserving green cover, he said this would require a “staggering schedule of aforestation and deforestation as part of the development scheme of urban and rural areas”.
Justice Mishra also pointed out that in March this year, the Commission, for the first time, set up a Core Group of experts and different stakeholders on environment, climate change and human rights to suggest measures to prevent mitigate and minimise environment degradation. Based on the suggestions of the Core Group, an advisory was also issued to the Centre and states recently on steps to be taken to achieve the objectives.
He also sought to remind that “protection of environment is a constitutional duty and the observance and celebration of the Environment Day is to be essentially seen as a day of duty cast upon every human being to at least not harm our ecosystem, bio-diversity and environment”.
Reminding the need to find a balance between the need for development and preserving our ecosystem and climate, the NHRC chief said “as part of the global fraternity, we have to stick to the emission norms to allow us breathe fresh and clean air, we have to save our green belts, prevent unmindful illegal mining, shrinking water bodies, disposal of plastics and domestic waste, promotion of bio-fuel technologies and sharing it with others to develop alternative energy sources. Solar and wind apart from nuclear and hydro technologies is the call of the day.