While several countries are disappointed with the US after its President Donald Trump announced withdrawing his country from the Paris agreement on climate change, India has stood its ground on the issue. And in this regard Prime Minister Narendra Modi has rightly said that whether the Paris pact survives the shock from the US withdrawal from the deal or not, India is committed to preserve and protect climate. “Paris or no Paris, our commitment to preserving the climate is for the sake of future generations,” Prime Minister said while addressing the St Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) in Russia.
Undoubtedly a bold statement in the face of absurdity shown by the US over climate change, India has always essayed hard to make its presence felt on the emission front. It unveiled National Solar Mission in 2010 with a target of installing 22,000 Mega Watts. In the early 2015, New Delhi announced installing 100,000MW of solar power, 60,000 MW of wind and 10,000MW of small hydropower and 5,000 MW of biomass-based by 2022. Production of non-fossil fuels generated electricity would be around 40 percent by 2030. These are ambitious targets, which India wants to achieve in less than a decade and what took Germany and others more than two decades to achieve.
Despite this, India’s role on the climate change has not been accepted by the world. Instead, Donald Trump accused India and China of taking undue advantage of the Paris agreement. “India makes its participation contingent on receiving billions and billions and billions of dollars in foreign aid from developed countries,” Trump said. This uncharitable comment was made by an American leader whose knowledge is shorn off India’s contributions in addressing the concerns related to the climate change. In spite of being the fourth largest carbon emitter of the world, India, as per experts, plans to cut carbon emission intensity by 33 to 35 percent from 2005 levels over 15 years. As per a government data, 238 million LED bulbs have been distributed through an innovative programme of advanced market commitments. Then under the Direct Benefit Transfer Scheme, LPG cylinders have been distributed to 176.3 million households across the country.
What will happen if US pulls out of Paris accord?
India along with the US joined more than 190 countries in 2015 in signing the Paris climate deal, which aims at strengthening of the global response to the threat of climate change by keeping a global temperature below two degree Celsius. Experts say that if the US withdraws from the climate change deal, the move could add 0.3C to global temperatures. But members of the European Union are confident that things would be managed by roping in US states’ governors and business leaders. States like California and New York have their own programmes on reduction of emissions from power plants and vehicles. Several American private companies are shifting towards cleaner energy. Yet the US was doing less on global warming. In 2015, the US under Barack Obama administration had vowed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent below 2005 level by 2025 as part of the Paris accord. But now Trump has made it clear that he would not abide by any of the US’ previous commitments under the Paris agreement.
What is Paris accord?
What is excellent about the Paris accord is that from superpowers to wealthy city-states to vulnerable low lying island nations—all agree to globally coordinate action on climate change. The accord maintains that parties to climate change will hold temperature below two degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels and that they will pursue to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels. The accord requires credible reductions in carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions. It also calls on member countries to reduce emissions to zero. There are five-year reviews to emission cuts. All this entailed developed nations, the major contributors of carbon emissions, to move rapidly from fossil fuel energy to renewable energy sources. This also entailed developed nations providing developing nations US $100 billion dollar per year to 2020 and more after 2020 for the purchase of new technology.
The Paris accord facilitates a roadmap to get the world rid of the fossil fuel energy. Even as the US has threatened to withdraw from the accord, countries like India are committed to see strong emission cuts for the sake of future generations. In fact, India, as per Prime Minister Modi, has been working for thousands of years to protect the environment. “For the last 5000 years, even when I was not born, it has been the tradition in India to protect the environment,” the Prime Minister said. Therefore, the US withdrawal from the accord would have a trifle effect on India, keen on to change the face of environment through new technology and non-polluting energy sources.