The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has approved India’s updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to be communicated to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
The updated NDC seeks to enhance India’s contributions to achieving the strengthening of the global response to the threat of climate change, as agreed under the Paris Agreement. This action will also help India introduce low emission growth paths. It would protect the country’s interests and safeguard its future development needs based on the principles and provisions of the UNFCCC.
India at 26th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP26) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) held in Glasgow, United Kingdom, expressed to step up its climate action by presenting to the world five elements of nectar (Panchamrit ) of India’s climate action. This update of India’s existing NDC translates the ‘Panchamrit’ announced at COP 26 into enhanced climate targets. The upgrade is also a step towards achieving India’s long-term goal of reaching net zero by 2070.
Earlier, India submitted its Nationally Intended Contribution (NDC) to the UNFCCC on October 2, 2015. The 2015 NDC consisted of eight targets; three of them have quantitative objectives until 2030, that is, that the cumulative capacity of installed electrical energy from non-fossil sources reaches 40%; reducing the emissions intensity of GDP by 33 to 35 percent compared to 2005 levels and creating an additional carbon store of 2.5 to 3 billion tons of CO2 equivalent through forests and tree canopies additional
Under the updated NDC, India now commits to reducing the emissions intensity of its GDP by 45 percent by 2030 from 2005 levels and achieving around 50 percent of the cumulative capacity of ‘electricity installed from energy resources not based on fossil fuels by the year 2030. Today’s approval also advances the Honorable Prime Minister’s vision of sustainable lifestyles and climate justice for protect the poor and vulnerable from the adverse impacts of climate change. The updated NDC says “Propose and further propagate a healthy and sustainable way of life based on traditions and values of conservation and moderation, including through a mass movement for ‘LIFE’ – ‘Lifestyle for the Environment’ as key to combating climate change.” The decision on enhanced NDCs demonstrates India’s commitment at the highest level to delink economic growth from greenhouse gas emissions.
India’s updated NDC has been prepared after careful consideration of our national circumstances and the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities (CBDR-RC). India’s updated NDC also reaffirms our commitment to work towards a low-carbon pathway, while striving to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.
Recognizing that lifestyle plays an important role in climate change, the Honorable Prime Minister of India, at COP 26, proposed a ‘One Word Movement’ to the global community. This word is LIFE…L, I, F, E, meaning lifestyle for the environment. The vision of LIFE is to live a lifestyle that is in tune with our planet and does not harm it. India’s updated NDC also captures this citizen-centric approach to combating climate change.
The updated NDC also represents the framework for India’s transition to cleaner energy for 2021-2030. The updated framework, along with many other government initiatives, including tax concessions and incentives such as the Production Linked Incentive Scheme to promote manufacturing and the adoption of renewable energy, will provide an opportunity to improve India’s manufacturing capabilities and enhance exports. It will lead to a global increase in green jobs, such as renewable energy, clean energy industries, in automotive, manufacturing of low-emission products such as electric vehicles and super-efficient household appliances, and innovative technologies such as green hydrogen, etc. India’s updated NDC will be implemented during 2021-2030 through programs and schemes of relevant Ministries/Departments and with due support from States and Union Territories. The government has launched many schemes and programs to scale up India’s actions in both adaptation and mitigation. Adequate action is being taken under these schemes and programs in many sectors including water, agriculture, forests, energy and business, sustainable mobility and housing, management of waste, the circular economy and resource efficiency, etc. As a result of the aforementioned measures, India has continued to progressively decouple economic growth from greenhouse gas emissions. The Net Zero target by 2030 for Indian Railways alone will lead to a reduction in emissions by 60 million tonnes per year. Similarly, India’s massive LED light bulb campaign is reducing emissions by 40 million tonnes annually.
India’s climate actions to date have been largely funded from domestic resources. However, providing new and additional financial resources as well as technology transfer to address the global challenge of climate change are among the commitments and responsibilities of developed countries under the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement. India will also need its fair share of these international financial resources and technological support.
India’s NDC does not commit it to any sector-specific mitigation actions or obligations. India’s goal is to reduce the overall emissions intensity and improve the energy efficiency of its economy over time, while protecting vulnerable sectors of the economy and segments of our society .