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Environmentalists welcome India's climate action plans

New Delhi: Oct 3, 2015, DHNS 0:48 IST
Minister of State for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Prakash Javadekar (C) outlines the plan to tackle climate change at a press conference in New Delhi on Friday. AFP
Environmentalists have welcomed India’s climate action plans, which they said are better than the targets set by the United States and China, the two biggest polluters of the world.

“India’s climate plan builds on the progress the country has made to expand its renewable energy deployment. As one of the most vulnerable countries to climate change, India’s targets are good,” said Nitin Pandit, chief executive officer of the India wing of the World Resources Institute.

A quick analysis by the Centre for Science and Environment backs up the WRI assertions. “India’s INDC is fair and is quite ambitious, specifically on renewable energy and forestry,” says Sunita Narain, director general, CSE.

India’s emissions intensity targets are similar to that of China’s. While India pledged to reduce the emissions intensity of its GDP by 33 to 35 per cent by 2030, below 2005 levels, China's pledge is to decrease the emissions intensity of its GDP by 60 to 65 per cent in the same period. As a result, both countries will have almost same emission intensity levels.

India’s pledge to install 40 per cent of its total electricity capacity from non-fossil fuel-based sources is more ambitious than that of the US. “Forty per cent of electricity from renewable energy by 2030 is definitely possible, especially so with financial and technical support,” said Pujarini Sen, Climate and Energy Campaigner for Greenpeace India. In contrast, even under the most ambitious Clean Power Plan of President Barack Obama, the US will only have about 30 per cent of its electricity capacity on non-fossils by 2030. India envisages about 250-300 GW of solar and wind energy capacity, while the US will reach 275 GW solar and wind capacity by 2030 and China has pledged 300 GW solar and wind power in the same period.

The forestry target, too, is ambitious. It intends to create an additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent through additional forests.
DH News Service

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