India Charts Its Own Course, But ‘Shifts Tone’ on Climate Threat
While India is charting its own course on climate change, Prime Minister Narendra Modi acknowledged the need for action during his three days of meetings with U.S. President Barack Obama in late January.
India is a sovereign country and “no pressure from any country or any person has any effect on it,” Modi said. But “Whoever worries about the future generations has a responsibility to be conscious about climate change (and) adopt practices and policies which will ensure a good life and good environment for future generations.”
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Modi’s remarks during the summit “represent a shift in India’s tone on global warming,” Bloomberg reports. “It previously emphasized the historical responsibility of industrial nations for creating the problem, and the Indian government has been ambiguous about whether it will adopt domestic targets for reducing greenhouse gases. Modi’s comments suggest he’s ready to work with Obama on a deal in Paris in December that would for the first time require all nations, rich and poor alike, to restrain emissions.”
India is the world’s third-largest producer of carbon pollution, but the World Resources Institute expects its emissions to exceed China’s in the next decade, SciDevNet reports. At a time when 25% of its population lacks access to electricity, “India needs emission space for a few more decades plus support from developed countries to build green industrial capacities.”
India plans to install 100 GW of solar capacity by 2022 increase renewable generation from 6% to 15% of total supply by 2019. By that year, Modi is counting on solar electricity to power at least two light bulbs, a cooker, and a television in every home. (h/t to Clean Energy Review for pointing us to the Bloomberg report)