India Pledges to Reduce GHG Emissions and Increase Green Cover
The new climate plan will do a good job in combining opportunities to reduce emissions in the near term, including clear goals to restore landscapes that will bring long-term benefits.
October 4, 2016
India has pledged to increase the share of renewable fuels in installed power generation capacity to further reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions. The country has planned to increase its forest and tree cover, which will provide additional carbon sinks. India’s climate action plan, or intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs) as these are referred to in the UN negotiations, shaped by two important factors: First, its development imperatives, and second, the continued lack of clarity in the negotiations on key issues, particularly on financial flows and technological support.
In its 38-page submission to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), India has assiduously made the case that while it is an emerging economy, and is counted among the major economies; it is also a country facing huge developmental deficits.
India’s emission intensity reduction target of 33 to 35 percent assumes that the economy would grow at an average rate of 8 percent every year till 2030. This is a percentage point lower than the annual growth rate of 9 percent that was assumed in the Copenhagen-Cancun pledge of 2009-2010. Given that India has put forward a relative target, a lower growth rate assumption would have an impact on the rate of reduction of emission.
Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said, “If India continues to maintain its current rate of emission intensity reduction, roughly 1.5 percent per year, it will be able to ensure a reduction of 34 to 35 percent by 2030. So, we are sure we will achieve at least 35% reduction by 2030.”