India: Only G20 Nation On Track To Meet 20C Global Warming Targets

India is the only “2°C compatible” country in the G20, according to the Climate Transparency Report released on 19 November 2020.

About the Report

  • The Climate Transparency Report (previously known as “Brown to Green Report”)looks at how G20 countries are doing when it comes to climate action and transitioning to a net-zero economy.
  • The Climate Transparency Report not only helps these countries understand how much more they need to do, but also helps citizens in holding these governments accountable for implementing the Paris Agreement.

Major Findings

  • 1.50C Global Warming Targets: No country is so far on track to meet the 1.50C global warming targets set in Paris in 2016 but some are performing a lot worse than others.
  • Status of Two Top Polluters: Two of the G20’s top polluters, the United States and China, were found to be a long way off meeting the goals they set themselves as part of the agreement.
  • EU: The European Union isn’t doing much better, as the report says current climate change policies aren’t enough to meet its goal of 40 per cent emission reductions by 2030.

The Report on India

  • India is the only “2°C compatible” country in the G20, according to the Climate Transparency Report released on 19 November 2020.
  • The report pointed out that India is not on track for a 1.5 degree Celsius global warming targets set in Paris in 2016.

What it suggests for India

  • India can remove the price of distorting subsidies from coal through different fiscal policies. Redirecting the subsidies to renewable energy sources could lead to cost savings and improve the quality of air.
  • India needs to develop a roadmap for subsequent phasing out of coal and a just transition for workers and communities.
  • Since the transport sector contributes 14 per cent of energy related to carbon-dioxide emissions, the government can take this as an opportunity to boost the share of electric vehicles and meet its target of 30 per cent EVs by 2030.
  • The report suggested that India could become a global leader if it abandoned plans to build a new coal-fired power and phases out coal use for power by 2040.

Recent Initiatives by India

  • KUSUM Scheme: The report commended the expansion of solar investment into the agricultural sector through PM-KUSUM Scheme. The Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha evem Utthan Mahabhiyan scheme aims to develop 25GW of solar capacity by 2022.
  • Transition in Power Sector: The report applauded the acceleration of transition in the power sector. According to the report, the demand for coal is falling, and the development of new pipelines for power generation using coal is shrinking gradually.

A cause of Concern

  • The report criticized India's plan to liberalize new investment in coal mines. It said the decision sends the wrong signal that coal production will continue in the future as well. Coal production is on the rise in the country and on track to produce a record high of 700Mt of coal in 2020-21.