In the backdrop of heavy pressure on the annex 1 countries to submit to harsh emission targets, there seems lack of focus of two very key areas. Urban Sustainability and Migration. Here in context of India, it is specifically relevant since we have 70 % rural population and not a single nationwide migration policy. We face all sorts of migration issues related to communal/religion oriented migration such as the fleeing of Kashmiri Pandits out of Kashmir to the climate refugees from Bangladesh entering our country. But the most important transition seems to be made from the rural to the urban areas.

The rural domestic economy being so unstable , having an excess of landless agricultural labourers and very limited opportunities to sustain jobs in the non agricultural sector. Its shocking to see the level of sanitation and education and health you might find in these rural areas for which these rural people migrate to urban areas in hope of better facilities. But the ground reality remains that instead of getting more facilities , the city now has to allocate its resources among more people and more often than not these people get manual labour work with minimum wages and form the urban poor sector. The urban poor sector is highly unsustainable and with growing cities and a rapidly growing population it will become increasingly difficult to handle this situation. More than ab economic crisis this could become a social crisis leading to a very unsustainable lifestyle.

Linking this to the negotiations , there is only one clause in the whole AWG LCA text which refers to refugees. We must fight to keep this clause and if possible reform the clause to that of “migrants”. What we also need to do is , intervene in our local government policies specifically in city plans and make them more participatory and integrated planning oriented approaches. Something like rainwater investing and green buildings should be as much if not more of an importance to us. The least we could do is to reform current lifestyles instead of waiting 10 years for annex 1 countries to agree to reduce emissions and help in financing. Mind you,this is the least we could do.

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