India Rejects Net Zero Carbon Emissions Target, Says Pathway More Important
India COP26 Climate Discussion in Glasgow, Scotland is carrying a strong message for rich nations: Tidy up your home first when considering increasing climate action.
The world's third-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, after India, China and the United States, is under pressure to announce plans to become carbon neutral at a climate conference in Glasgow in the middle of this century or next week.
But Environment Secretary RP Gupta said India was a "victim" of global warming and "not a contributor." He told reporters that declaring a net zero is not a solution to the climate crisis.
“It’s more important how much carbon you’re going to throw into the atmosphere before you reach net zero,” he said, adding that it’s more important to find ways for the world to reduce emissions and prevent dangerous growth. Global temperature.
Both China and Saudi Arabia have set 2060 targets, but now they are largely meaningless without concrete action, critics say.
Now and by the middle of the century, the United States will release 92 gigatonnes of carbon into the atmosphere and the EU 62 gigatonnes, Gupta said, citing the Indian government's calculations. By the net zero target date, China would have added a staggering 450 gigatonnes, he added.
Representatives from around 200 countries will meet in Glasgow, Scotland from 31 October to 12 November for climate talks to strengthen action to combat global warming under the 2015 Paris Agreement.
The fact that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend the conference shows how seriously the country is taking climate change, officials say. Chinese President Xi Jinping is not expected.
India is committed to reducing its GDP emissions intensity by 33% -35% from 2005 levels by 2030, to achieve a 24% reduction by 2016.
Some environmentalists say that India may consider reducing emissions by up to 40 per cent, depending on whether it is economical and new technology.
Yadav said he would measure the success of the Glasgow Conference to help reduce emissions for the developing world while ensuring economic growth.
“We can’t do it ourselves because we need to think about our economy,” he said.
But Yadav made it clear that when developed nations do not meet their own climate targets, India will not be under much pressure to reduce emissions.
Coal is the dirtiest form of energy, and scientists say that phasing out coal use is the key to coping with the climate crisis. But more than 70% of India's electricity is still generated by coal-fired thermal power plants.
Yadav said it was unrealistic for India to make major cuts in coal production and that "even developed countries are taking time to get out of the coal and gas sector."
Despite India's growing energy needs to accommodate India's 1.3 billion population, Environment Secretary Gupta said, "The share of coal and installed capacity will continue to decline in percentage terms."
This, to some extent, will come from the retirement and dismantling of old and inefficient power plants, even if new ones are being built, Gupta said.
"It is not good to impose a regional agenda. We will decide at our own pace (on coal production)," he added.