India today firmly denounced US President Donald Trump's allegation that in signing the historic Paris Climate Accord, it had reaped "billions" of dollars.
"What Trump said is not the reality," said Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj. "We have signed the Paris accord not under any pressure nor for any money ...to say we did it for money, I totally reject that," she told reporters today in Delhi.
While announcing last week that the US will pull out of the climate change agreement signed in 2015, Mr Trump said that it compromised his country's interests and claimed that Delhi will be paid billions of dollars to meet its commitment to combatting climate change in the accord that was agreed upon by nearly 200 countries. "India will be allowed to double its coal production by 2020. Think of it. India can double their coal production. We're supposed to get rid of ours," Mr Trump professed.
However, the agreement is non-binding and what countries agree to cut back on - or what policies they are to follow - is voluntary. The point of Paris is to use the power of public commitment and accountability. The idea is that, by publicly stating targets and reporting transparently on progress, participants will be driven by pride, peer pressure, and internal politics to meet those targets," pointed out this report on Vox.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi's commitment to solar power has been commended by world powers including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, with whom he met last week. PM Modi has said that by 2020, India will contribute half the world's solar energy.
India is the world's third-biggest emissions generator and the PM said while abroad last week that "The protection of the environment and the mother planet is an article of faith."