(BN) India Plans to Include Environmental Costs in GDP Data (Update1)


India Plans to Include Environmental Costs in GDP Data (Update1)
2010-11-30 08:40:56.414 GMT

(Adds comment from environment minister from second

By Natalie Obiko Pearson
Nov. 30 (Bloomberg) -- India plans to quantify the cost of
environmental damage to the economy when reporting gross
domestic product figures within five years, an initiative it
will encourage other governments to follow at the climate talks
in Mexico.
"India will report a GDP that takes into account
environmental degradation by 2015," Environment Minister Jairam
Ramesh said today at a conference in New Delhi. "We must
provide leadership in this area."
Countries are grappling with ways to price pollution so
that those that produce it can be made to pay for its costs.
More than 30 nations have introduced a price on carbon with an
emissions-trading system, according to Anthony Hobley, a Sydney-
based lawyer and climate change specialist at Norton Rose LLP.
India's economy expanded 8.9 percent in the three months
through September from a year earlier, the Central Statistical
Organisation said today. That was above the 8.2 percent median
estimate of 30 economists in a Bloomberg News survey.
Ramesh said such figures fail to incorporate the toll on
the economy of rising public health bills and other long-term
costs linked to environmental damage, such as air and
groundwater pollution.
"If we are reporting GDP growth of 8 percent a year,
actual GDP growth that takes into account environmental costs
may be 2.5 percentage points lower," he said. The United
Nations climate talks began yesterday in the Mexican resort of
Cancun and are due to conclude on Dec. 10.

For Related News and Information:
India economic snapshot: ESNP IN <GO>
India inflation: INFINFY <Index> HP <GO>
India economy stories: TNI INDIA ECO BN <GO>
Climate-change news: NI CLIMATE <GO>
Top environment stories: GREEN <GO>
Most-read environmental news: MNI ENV <GO>

--Editors: Baldave Singh, Randall Hackley.

To contact the reporter on this story:
Natalie Obiko Pearson in Mumbai at +91-22-6612-9107 or

To contact the editor responsible for this story:
Clyde Russell at +65-6311-2423 or crussell7@bloomberg.net.