Environmental lawyers criticized Sri Lanka proposing to sign the Paris Agreement under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change regarding greenhouse gas emissions as being a farcical exercise.

Attorney-at-Law Jagath Gunawardana said that the country had no role to play in reducing greenhouse gases and emissions, adding that the failure on the part of developed countries to act in this regard had meant that Sri Lanka was victimized.
“We are net absorber of gases and emissions and we have no surplus of gases and emissions,” he maintained.

He said that even in the case of growing forests to absorb carbon dioxide, developed countries want to compel us to convert our lands which are for food crops into forest land, thereby increasing our dependency on developed countries as we would have to import the food crops, he remarked.

“We are not the ones who are responsible. Signing the Paris Agreement or entering into obligations will not change the situation unless and until developed countries fulfill their part,” he noted.

“We can anticipate possible situations and take remedial and preventive measures. Developed countries want us to reduce further. There is no optimism to be shared. We can only dissent. There is this patent dishonesty on their part even in the negotiations. There is no light at the end of the tunnel to be seen,” he added.