Honored to be Chair of Future Earth’s Engagement Committee

I am honoured to chair the Future Earth Engagement Committee at a time when there is growing public consciousness of the environmental challenges we face as a global community and when there is a widespread public desire for concrete actions from all governments. I hope to be able to make some contributions to bridging the gap between the world of science and the world of politics.

More details: http://www.futureearth.org/news/indian-economist-and-politician-jairam-ramesh-be-chair-future-earths-engagement-committee

Warming up to the Climate Change Challenge


India is most vulnerable to the vagaries of climate change. Because of pressing domestic realities, India needs to change its traditional mindset and provide bold new leadership to global climate change talks…

Click here to read more details about my public lecture on “Warming up to the Climate Change Challenge”, in Chennai on October 24 at an event jointly organised by The Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy and the Asian College of Journalism, and focused on increasing awareness about the need for concerted policy interventions in managing the impact of climate change on India.

Watch the video here:


Column: प्रदूषण की नई चुनौती

लंबे समय से प्रदूषण की समस्या से जूझ रहे उत्तर प्रदेश के सोनभद्र जिले में सिंगरौली क्षेत्र के लोगों के लिए अंतत: अब जाकर थोड़ी बहुत राहत मिलने की उम्मीद जगी है। यहां पर बड़ी तादाद में निजी और सार्वजनिक क्षेत्र की औद्योगिक इकाइयां तथा विद्युत पैदा करने वाले उद्योगों का समूह है। यह इलाका देश में सर्वाधिक विद्युत उत्पादन और खनन वाले क्षेत्रों में शुमार है। कुछ आकलन के अनुसार जहरीले मरकरी अथवा पारा का उत्सर्जन करने वाले देश के उद्योगों में 17 प्रतिशत उत्सर्जन केवल इस इलाके से होता है। स्थानीय आबादी को लेकर किए गए आधिकारिक और गैर-आधिकारिक, दोनों ही तरह के अध्ययनों से पता चलता है कि यहां के लोगों के खून में मरकरी का स्तर बहुत अधिक है। इसी तरह उनके बालों में भी इसका प्रभाव नजर आता है और…

Read more: http://www.jagran.com/editorial/apnibaat-11719889.html

This column was first published on October 22, 2014 at:


Column: Early climate change warriors

It is generally believed that global warming is a concern that is of fairly recent origin. Indeed, the issue has become embedded in the public consciousness only in the past two decades. But actually there were early warning signals that were ignored and the world is paying a huge price for it. The worst culprit in this regard is the United States which cannot take the excuse “we didn’t know.”

Daniel Patrick Moynihan, essentially a social scientist, was unarguably one of the outstanding public intellectuals of the 20th century. He held many pivotal positions in the American academic and political establishment including…

Read more: http://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/early-climate-change-warriors/article6520297.ece

This column was first published on October 21, 2014 at:


Column: Internal remittances need focus

India is the largest recipient of remittances from its workers abroad. It received close to $70 billion in 2013-14, which was about a not-insubstantial 3.5% of GDP (gross domestic product). About 30% of these remittances are from West Asia and another 30% or so from North America, which has seen the fastest growth in recent years. Unlike in China, annual remittances to India have consistently been higher than FDI (foreign direct investment) inflows and have…

This column was first published on October 20, 2014 at:


Read more at: http://www.livemint.com/Opinion/FleKLeMOmBoSQqPzzvy7vI/Internal-remittances-need-focus.html

Notes from Energy, Economy, Environment discussion at the Boston University’s Frederick S. Pardee Center

The Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study for the Longer-Range Future in collaboration with the Boston University Global Programs’ India Initiative hosted an informal discussion with former Minister Jairam Ramesh of India on October 6 titled “Energy, Economy, Environment.”

Sixteen participants joined in the discussion, including Boston University professors from Earth & Environment, the School of Public Health, the College of Communications, and the School of Management, as well as some former Pardee Center Graduate Summer Fellows.

Read more at: http://www.bu.edu/pardee/2014/10/09/pardee-center-hosts-discussion-with-minister-jairam-ramesh-of-india

This article was first published on October 9, 2014 on the website of:


Column: India signs the Minamata Convention

Given their inevitable expansion over the next decade, it is imperative that India establish and enforce mercury emission standards for coal-fired power plants.

A year after it was adopted, India joined the global mercury abatement agreement. Not surprisingly, India dragged its feet a bit, but in the end signed up to the Minamata Convention on Mercury on 30 September, a year after it was adopted. The convention that took almost six years to take final shape is named after the Japanese city that, since the 1950s, has become…

Read more at: http://www.livemint.com/Opinion/BXAi1e84fDmrnpk1fSAuNL/India-signs-the-Minamata-Convention.html

This column was first published on October 13, 2014 at:


Conversations in Diplomacy (Belfer Center)

My talk on on climate, poverty, and India’s future at the Belfer Center on September 30, 2014.


Column: सही तस्वीर की जरूरत

कुछ साल पहले नोबेल पुरस्कार से सम्मानित इंटरगवर्नमेंटल पैनल ऑन क्लाइमेट चेंज (आइपीसीसी) ने एक चेतावनी जारी कर सबको चौंका दिया था कि हिमालय के ग्लेशियर 2035 तक खत्म हो जाएंगे। मई 2009 में जब मैं पर्यावरण एवं वन मंत्री था, तब यह बात मेरे संज्ञान में लाई गई थी। मैं चौंक गया। क्या सच में ऐसा हो सकता है? इसके बाद मैंने देश भर में पर्यावरण के क्षेत्र में कार्यरत अलग-अलग संस्थानों के वैज्ञानिकों से बातचीत की। इनका निष्कर्ष बिल्कुल अलग था और इससे आइपीसीसी की अजीबोगरीब घोषणा पर सवाल खड़े हो गए। हिमालयी ग्लेशियरों का अध्ययन करने वाले वैज्ञानिकों ने मुङो बताया कि हिमालय के ग्लेशियर आर्कटिक ग्लेशियरों से इस मायने में अलग हैं कि उनका निम्नतम बिंदु समुद्र की सतह से तीन हजार मीटर से अधिक है।

Read more at: http://epaper.jagran.com/ePaperArticle/07-oct-2014-edition-Delhi-City-page_8-966-14270-4.html

This column was first published on October 7, 2014 at:


Speech: Plotting a Sustainable Energy Future for India


My speech on “The Growth Imperative: Plotting a Sustainable Energy Future for India” at the MITEI Energy Colloquium.


This video was first published on:


All rights reserved. Copyright © 2014. Jairam Ramesh.