Column – English

Net Zero is a win-win


Published on: October 19, 2023

Chandra Bhushan Chandra Bhushan

Article The transformative potential of decarbonisation is that it can meet socio-economic goals better than current development pathways.

The Paris Agreement that India signed alongside 195 other countries in 2015 came into effect on 4 November 2016. Article 4.1 of the Paris Agreement refers to the goal of achieving ‘Net Zero’ through a “balance between anthropogenic emissions by sources and removals by sinks of greenhouse gases in the second half of this century, on the basis of equity, and in the context of sustainable development and efforts to eradicate poverty”.

To fulfil the obligations under the Paris Agreement, in November 2021, at the 26th Conference of Parties (COP26) in Glasgow, Prime Minister Narendra Modi pledged that India would reach net zero emissions by 2070 and meet 50 per cent of its electricity requirements from renewable sources by the year 2030. In the words of Dr Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency, “India is pioneering a new model of economic development that could avoid the carbon-intensive approaches that many countries have pursued in the past – and provide a blueprint for other developing economies”. Clearly, in the eyes of the world, India is in a position where it can act as a leader in climate action and pave the way for that development that follows an alternative model to that of the industrialised western countries and China. We can demonstrate that the process of economic growth need not come at the cost of our environment or indeed the health of our citizens.

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