Developing country participation in mitigating climate change has always been a contentious issue in climate negotiations, given the historic responsibility of rich industrialised nations in causing climate change and the weak national capability of the developing world in addressing the impact of climate change.1 The 2007 Bali Action Plan (BAP) gave scope to enhance the participation of developing countries in climate change mitigation when it launched a two-year negotiating process to conclude at the 15th Conference of Parties (COP) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Copenhagen in 2009. The outcome – the Copenhagen Accord – was a weak and contested political agreement. Many developing countries, including India and China, had voluntarily put forth their mitigation pledges in Copenhagen in a bid to motivate the developed countries to be more ambitious.2 While India pledged “to reduce the emissions intensity of its GDP by 20-25 per cent by 2020 in comparison to the 2005 level”,3 China’s pledge was to lower its carbon emissions intensity of GDP by 40-45 per cent by 2020 in comparison to the 2005 level, as well as to “increase the share of non-fossil fuels in primary energy consumption to around 15 per cent by 2020 and increase forest coverage by 40 million hectares and forest stock volume by 1.3 billion cubic meters by 2020 from the 2005 levels”.4 Both India and China had already announced their respective national action plans on climate change.5