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OPINION: India’s INDCs – An opportunity for co-creation of green technologies


Mihir Bhatt, CDKN’s Senior Country Advisor for India reflects on the country’s newly released INDCs and the opportunities they present for India.

India’s much awaited INDCs are out – and to widespread acclaim. This is a firm leap forward for the country; not only towards a robust INDCs policy framework, but also in terms of a bold and clear public stand on making India’s INDCs work!

The entire team at the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change must be congratulated for making the process open and transparent. A far more balanced approach on adaptation and mitigation in the context of India and a wide range of ideas and insights have been included in this process of finalising the INDCs. What India can, should, and will do has been reviewed over the past several months with great care and caution. India’s rapid economic growth efforts, steps to lift citizens out of poverty and need for better livelihoods and income generation is addressed in INDCs.

The main features of India’s INDCs are:

  1. Calls for the transfer of green technology and low-cost international finance including funding from the Green Climate Fund (GCF).
  2. Enhancing a wide range of adaptation policies by investing in sectors vulnerable to climate change, such as agriculture, water resources and the Himalayan and coastal regions. Health and disaster management have also found a place on INDC agenda.
  3. Unconditional emissions intensity reduction of 33-35% by 2030 based on 2005 levels.
  4. Creating a carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent through additional forest and tree cover by 2030.
  5. A target of 40% of production of electricity from non-fossil based energy sources by 2030 with expanding focus on solar energy.

India’s INDCs join a select number of country initiatives which aim to integrate Disaster Risk Reduction with Climate Change Adaptation. The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) actively pursued this inclusion and the Climate & Development Knowledge Network (CDKN) played its role by offering inputs into the process of integration at two major events – The National Consultation on Adaptation and Disaster Resilience in India’s Intended Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC), July 23-24, 2015 held at IIC by Climate Action Network South Asia (CANSA) and AADRR, and at the 2nd Annual South Asian Cities Summit, New Delhi at IHC May 22-23, 2015, organised by CDKN and Cities Network Campaign and All India Institute of Local Self Government.

Shri Prakash Javadekar, Minister for Environment, Forest & Climate Change made a strong point recently at the Observer Research Foundation (ORF) Round Table about ‘Co-creation’ of green technologies to Ms. Amber Rudd, MP, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change of UK when she was in Delhi. His comments were positive and forward looking, emphasising that India must ask for access to green technologies not available to it so far, that it should not rest or depend on these technologies alone, but develop its own technologies to address the challenges of climate change. Ms. Rudd was open and cooperative to finding ways to transform the debate on technology towards a joint action.

India has stood on its own feet in developing its own Space and Nuclear Technology; it should now work towards developing its own Green Technology. Given the chance, India can and will make a wide range of green technologies that will not only benefit India, but also those countries fighting poverty and looking towards accelerated economic growth.

Time has come to focus the energies of India’s scientists, technocrats, business, bankers, industry, researchers, and common citizens in this direction of co-creating Green Technologies. Opportunities exist for India to work with global actors for the sharing of ideas and technical know how and for the development of ‘co-creation of green technologies’ jointly between India and UK. Bringing in global knowledge on green technologies will also help in making knowledge the leading ingredient to ‘co-creation’ in India.  When implemented well India’s INDCs will reduce emission, reduce poverty, increase jobs and co-create knowledge based green technologies.

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