PM Modi to address Climate Ambition Summit on Saturday to mark 5 years of Paris Agreement

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will speak at the Climate Ambition Summit on Saturday which is being hosted by the United Nations and United Kingdom to mark the fifth anniversary of the adoption of the Paris Agreement.

The Paris Agreement is a legally binding international treaty on climate change which was adopted by 196 parties at 21st Conference of Parties in Paris, on December 12, 2015, and was enforced on November 4, 2016. The important virtual summit being co-hosted by France in partnership with Chile and Italy will give an opportunity to governments to present their commitment and compliance with the Paris Agreement.

Ahead of the conference, India underlined that it has been responsible to the commitments under the Paris Agreement but most of the developed world which is responsible for historical emissions hasn’t shown much progress. Financial commitment by developed countries to the tune of 11 trillion dollars to help the world mitigate and adapt to climate change hasn’t come through yet, Prakash Javadekar, Union environment minister said on Friday.

Also read | India forms high-level committee to implement Paris Agreement targets

“Climate change hasn’t happened in a day. It is the result of historical emissions over one hundred years. US has 25% of historical emission; EU has 22% of historical emissions; China has 13% and India has only 3%. We haven’t caused this problem but as a responsible nation, we will be a part of the solution,” said Javadekar. Presently, India is contributing only 6.8% of global emissions and its per capita emissions are only 1.9 tonnes (per capita) compared to, say, 15.5 tonnes per capita of US or 8.12 tonnes per capita of China.

Javadekar added that India’s nationally determined contribution (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement are 2 degree compliant. “India is among a handful of countries whose commitments are 2 degree C compliant compared to large parts of the world whose commitments will lead to 4 degree C global temperature rise over pre-industrial levels by the end of the century. This has been confirmed by independent reports also,” he added.

The national schemes that will help achieve India’s NDCs include National Plan on Climate Change; National Clean Air Programme; Swachch Bharat Mission; Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana; Namami Gange policy etc.

Javadekar announced that the installed capacity of renewable energy had increased by 226% in the past five years to over 89 GW now and India has a target of increasing installed renewable energy capacity to 450 GW by 2030.

India is projected to meet its pre-2020 climate pledge, also called the Cancun pledge, made in 2010. It is also likely to meet and possibly overachieve its nationally determined contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement, the Emissions Gap Report 2020 had said on Wednesday.

India, which emits 7.1% of global emissions (according to the Emissions Gap Report) and has per capita emissions that are 60 % lower than the global average, recorded a fall in emissions growth in 2019. India’s greenhouse gas emissions grew by only 1.4% in 2019, lower than the average of 3.3% per year over the last decade according to the report.

This slower-than-expected growth is primarily due to increased hydropower from a record monsoon and weaker economic growth, along with India’s continued growth in renewables, the report said. In comparison, China’s CO2 emissions grew by 3.1% in 2019 to reach a record high compared to growth of 2.4% in GHG emissions on average for the past decade.

Several countries including Canada, Indonesia, Mexico, the Republic of Korea and the United States of America are projected to miss their Cancun pledges and Australia, Brazil, Canada, the Republic of Korea and the United States of America are set to fall short of their NDCs under the Paris Agreement.

India had pledged in 2010 to reduce its emissions intensity of GDP (excluding the agriculture sector) by 20–25% below 2005 levels by 2020 which it has achieved. Further, under NDCs, India has committed to reducing the emission intensity of GDP by 33 to 35% by 2030 over 2005 levels.

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