Ahead of the crucial climate change summit in Paris, India today made a “comprehensive and ambitious” pledge to reduce its greenhouse emission intensity by upto 35 per cent by 2030 from 2005 levels, a 75 per cent jump over its present voluntary commitment.
Announcing this here, Union minister Prakash Javadekar said that, as per preliminary estimates, “at least USD 2.5 trillion (at 2014-15 prices) will be required for meeting India’s climate change actions between now and 2030”.
India also said that it would achieve 40 per cent installed capacity for electric power from non-fossil fuel resources by 2030, which would be a jump of 33 per cent from the present capacity.
Noting that India’s climate actions have so far been largely financed through domestic resources, he said that any substantial scale-up of climate action plans would require greater resources.
Spelling out India’s Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDC) on Mahatama Gandhi’s birth anniversary ahead, the environment minister said, “Our INDCs are comprehensive, ambitious and progressive and reflect all issues of mitigation, adaptation, finance, technology transfer and capacity building.”
India’s current voluntary pledge is for reducing emission intensity of its GDP by 20-25 per cent over 2005 levels by 2020, Javadekar told reporters here.
He said that as a major emerging economy, India has mainly three important targets.
“We want to reduce our emission intensity by upto 35 per cent by 2030. This is against the backdrop of 20 per cent (reduction) by 2020 and that means a rise of 75 per cent in our target.
“Secondly, we will increase our non-fossil fuel-based energy resources by upto 40 per cent,” Javadekar said.
In addition, India has also pledged to create an additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent through additional forest and tree cover by 2030.
“We are creating nearly three billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent of carbon sink through major afforestation programmes. We will save carbon emission to the tune 3.59 billion tonne of CO2 equivalent. It is a huge contribution from a developing country,” he said.
In a 38-page document submitted to UNFCCC late last night, India said it would need, as per preliminary estimates, around USD 206 billion between 2015 and 2030 for implementing adaptation actions in agriculture, forestry, fisheries infrastructure, water resources and ecosystems.
Noting that mitigation requirements are even “more enormous” for the country, India referred to an estimate given by NITI Aayog that the mitigation activities for moderate low carbon development would cost around USD 834 billion till 2030. Javadekar said that India’s per capita emissions in 2030 will remain lower than the current global average of developed nations, which is 9 metric tonnes of CO2 equivalent.
He said that this was a 15-year plan and the interest of the poor and farmers have been addressed in it. He said the INDCs were reached at following exhaustive consultations and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, too, had given his guidance and innovative ideas.
He said that although India is not part of the problem, it wants to be part of the solution.
India, in its document, however, clarified that its INDCs do not bind it to any sector-specific mitigation obligation or action, including in agriculture sector.
“India’s goal is to reduce overall emission intensity and improve energy efficiency of its economy over time and, at the same time, protect the vulnerable sectors of economy and segments of our society,” it said
in the INDC document.
Through its INDCs, India also pledged to better adapt to climate change by enhancing investments in development programmes in vulnerable sectors and areas, particularly agriculture, water resources, health and disaster management as well as the Himalayan and coastal regions.
It also announced that it will mobilise domestic and new and additional funds from developed countries to implement its declared mitigation and adaptation actions in view of the resources required and the resource gap.
India also pledged to build capacities and create a domestic framework and international architecture for quick diffusion of cutting-edge climate technology in the country and joint collaborative R&D for future technologies in this sphere. “The Paris agreement must incorporate loss and damage and make operational the Warsaw International Mechanism,” he said.
In its INDC document, India has advocated global collaboration in R&D — particularly in clean technologies and enabling their transfer free of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) costs to developing countries.
“IPR costs can also be borne from the GCF through a separate window,” it said.
“Through this INDC, India has shown its commitment to combating climate change and these actions are, indeed, important contributions to the global effort.
“However, our efforts to avoid emissions during our development process are also tied to the availability and level of international financing and technology transfer since India still faces complex developmental challenges,” the INDC document said.
Javadekar said that India was keen to try and work towards a low-carbon emission pathway while simultaneously endeavouring to meet all the developmental challenges that the country faces today.