By Manish Chand
SCHOLSS ELAMU (MUNICH):The climate has literally changed in Schloss Elmau – the ultra-luxe Alpine resort in Bavaria which is hosting the G7 summit of the world’s wealthiest countries. It was unusually warm in the day here and by evening, the mountains were washed with a torrent of rain, awakening global attention to an imminent climate emergency.
While German President Olaf Scholz is raising the bar and pushing hard for a climate club of green-minded nations, Prime Minister Narendra Modi who is attending the G7 summit as a special invitee has showcased India as a model for developing countries for taking decisive action to curb climate change. Blaming the rich world for the current global crisis, Mr Modi exhorted rich countries to support India’s climate mitigation efforts and called for expanding the constituency of Triple-P pro-planet people. “When a large country like India shows such ambition, other developing countries also get inspiration. We hope that the rich countries of G-7 will support India’s efforts,” he said in a session at the G7 summit on climate and energy.
“Today, a huge market for clean energy technologies is emerging in India. G-7 countries can invest in research, innovation, and manufacturing in this field. The scale that India can provide for every new technology can make that technology affordable for the whole world.”
Alluding to the launch of the Global Initiative for LiFE campaign last year, the Indian leader stressed that “the goal of this campaign is to encourage an eco-friendly lifestyle.”
“We can call the followers of this movement Triple-P i.e. ‘pro planet people’, and we should all take the responsibility of increasing the number of Triple-P people in our own countries. This will be our greatest contribution to the coming generations.”
With the world leaders listening in, PM Modi highlighted a host of pioneering steps taken by India for green growth like achieving the target of 10 per cent ethanol blending in petrol five months before the deadline and the target of 40 percent energy-capacity from non-fossil sources 9 years before time.”
German President Scholz is leading the green offensive from the front. As the summit began, the German leader sought backing from G7 leaders his pet idea of a “climate club” – a partnership of the countries with the highest ambitions for climate policy worldwide. As part of the climate club, Mr Scholz’s proposals include, among others, putting a price on carbon, revamping industry and forging deals with developing countries to lower carbon footprint.
The European Union backed the idea of climate club, with EU council president Charles Michel saying at the summit that the climate club could limit carbon leakage and complement the 192-country Paris Agreement.
“This is needed if we want to be serious,” said Mr Michel, who said a climate club could help the world go beyond “nice declarations and statements” into concrete action.
On the issue of climate change, India is largely aligned with the G7 agenda. In his intervention at G7 summit, PM Modi underscored India’s commitment to decarbonization and ramping up the production of renewable energy. Officials said that India will support a proposal by the United States and Germany, on behalf of the G7, for setting up an India-G7 partnership to fund and support India’s transition from a fossil-based economy to a carbon-neutral economy, confirmed.
Germany is set to be India’s preeminent partner in greening of the economy. This focus on Green and Sustainable Development Partnership was highlighted again during the meeting between PM Modi and the German leader at the Bavarian resort. The two leaders discussed issues like climate action, provision of climate financing and technology transfer. During PM Modi’s visit to Germany last month, the German leader had announced a mammoth $1 billion package to support green transition in India.
The invitation to India to participate in the G7 summit as a special invitee is becoming a regular affair, underscoring India’s growing indispensability to addressing global issues, ranging from maintaining the rules-based international order to curbing terrorism and greenhouse gas emissions.
(Author is CEO-Editor-in-Chief, India Writes Network, and India and The World magazine. He is Director, Centre for Global Insights India, a think tank focused on global affairs. He is in Munich to report on and analyse G7 summit. Views expressed are personal and do not reflect the official position or policy of Financial Express Online. Reproducing this content without permission is prohibited).