Modi launches initiative to cut carbon emissions
New Delhi: At the opening session of the World Climate Action Summit (COP28) in Dubai, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday announced the launch of the “Green Credit Initiative,” which focuses on creating carbon sinks through people's participation. The Prime Minister said that the climate finance commitments of the developed nations should be increased from “billions to trillions”. He also proposed to host the UN climate conference in 2028 or COP33 in India.
In his initial remarks, the Prime Minister said that the decision at the summit to operationalise the “loss and damage fund” has “increased his hope” for “concrete results”, with the fund reportedly expected to grant financial assistance to “vulnerable countries experiencing the severe impact of climate change”.
Pointing out that India contributes less than four per cent of total global emissions despite having 17 per cent of the population share, Mr Modi said India had given the world the example of striking the ultimate balance between ecology and economy as he exhorted developed nations to eliminate their own carbon footprints before 2050.
Warning against a "destructive mindset”, the Prime Minister further said that the world has to be “decisive, unified, balanced, ambitious and innovative” and that time is running out for the world to rectify its mistakes on pollution made during the last century. He pushed for “just and inclusive energy transitition”, technology transfer and the “due share of the global carbon budget to developing nations” of the Global South.
Speaking later at a session on climate finance, Mr Modi called for “available, accessible and affordable” climate finance by entities, including multilateral development banks, for countries of the Global South that are expecting assistance from developed countries in combating climate change.
In his opening remarks at the COP28 to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Prime Minister announced the launch of the Green Credits Initiative as a “pro-planet, proactive and positive initiative that “basically envisions the issue of green credits for plantations on waste and degraded lands and the river catchment areas in order to restore their vitality” with the full participation of people.
The Prime Minister also announced the launch of a portal for green plantation-based innovation solutions.
At the summit, Mr Modi was received by the President of the UAE and the host of the summit, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
Recognising that the UAE announced a $30 billion fund for global climate solutions at COP28, Mr Modi hailed the UAE’s Climate Finance Framework Initiative.
The Prime Minister said a small percentage of mankind had relentlessly destroyed nature, but that the entire mankind, especially the Global South, has to pay the price for it. He called on nations to avoid selfishness and the me-first attitude, adding that every nation should meet its climate targets as per nationally determined contributions (NDC).
Mr Modi also called for progress on the New Collective Quantified Goals on Climate Finance and an adequate Green Climate Fund and Adaptation Fund.
Pointing out that India is fulfilling its own earlier-announced NDCs, the Prime Minister pointed out that targets on emission intensity have been fulfilled 11 years earlier, while those on non-fossil fuels have been met nine years ahead of time. He reiterated India’s pledge to increase its non-fossil fuel share to 50 per cent and reduce emission intensity by 45 per cent by 2030, further reiterating that the “net zero” target will be met by 2070.
Pointing out the achievements of India in the field of green energy during its just-concluded year-long presidency of the G-20 grouping, Mr Modi pointed to the “One Earth, One Family, One Future” motto, the consensus on the green development pact, establishing principles for Lifestyle for sustainable development, a commitment to increase global renewable energy threefold, and the launch of the Global Biofuels Alliance in the sphere of hydrogen.