Guest essay by Eric Worrall
Iran’s deputy environment chief Karim Shafie has warned that Iran’s participation in the Paris Agreement is at risk if they don’t get their climate money.
Is Iran pulling out of Paris Agreement?
By Maryam Qarehgozlou
May 20, 2018
Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif signed the Paris Agreement on climate change during a ceremony at the United Nations headquarters in New York, April 22, 2016.
“However, the agreement was brought before the Guardian Council, but the council did not approve it and proposed amendments, so the deal is now being hammered out in agriculture, water and natural resources group of the Majlis,” ISNA quoted Karim Shafie, deputy environment chief for legal affairs, as saying on Saturday.
As Shafie said, Iran has submitted Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs) to the UNFCCC committing to cut the greenhouse gas emissions by 4% percent in 2030. However, subject to termination and non-existence of unfair and brutal sanctions, availability of international resources in the form of financial support and technology transfer, exchange of carbon credits, accessibility of bilateral or multilateral implementation mechanisms, transfer of clean technologies as well as capacity building, Iran has the potential of mitigating greenhouse gas emission up to 12%.
“By ratifying the Paris agreement, Iran should make commitments which might put the country into significant expenses,” the deputy environment chief said.
There are proponents and opponents of the agreement in Iran, he said, adding, those who are opposing the deal believe that ratifying the deal would carry considerable costs, and the costs should be funded by developed countries or international entities.
On the other hand those who are advocating the deal believe that the deal would help Iran to mitigate environmental pollutants and that “we” can mitigate greenhouse gas emission in sectors which may not carry high costs.
He further suggested that there are some concerns the deal may “act against our national interest” and that’s why “we should proceed with extreme caution”.
“We should be wary of not being forced to make and legally binding commitments which may later result in more sanctions and penalties for us,” he warned.
Personally I believe Iran’s ongoing high level support for global terrorism, and the exposure of Iran’s brazen lies about their clandestine nuclear weapons programme are higher priority geopolitical issues than any CO2 emissions cuts the Iranian government was offering. But maybe thats just me.