Delhi’s climate leadership can steer mitigation efforts - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

Delhi’s climate leadership can steer mitigation efforts

Dec 25, 2023 10:16 PM IST

India’s leadership inspires transformative change, offering hope for a world where every nation thrives in harmony with nature.

The culmination of COP28 not only witnessed the establishment of the loss and damage fund but also underscored India’s proactive stance in climate leadership and equity. As objectives awaited resolution for COP29, India’s drive to implement the Paris Agreement, prioritising equity and climate justice, stood out prominently. Union environment minister Bhupendra Yadav’s address during the closing plenary reiterated COP28’s collective commitment, emphasising the need to uphold the temperature goals outlined in Paris.

The loss and damage fund’s inception during COP28 represents a crucial milestone in addressing the unequal impacts of the climate crisis. (AP) PREMIUM
The loss and damage fund’s inception during COP28 represents a crucial milestone in addressing the unequal impacts of the climate crisis. (AP)

In this context, India’s significant role in climate leadership demands evaluation concerning its capacity to ensure fairness within the loss and damage fund. The fund’s inception during COP28 represents a crucial milestone in addressing the unequal impacts of the climate crisis. Garnering commitments nearing $500 million, notably from influential contributors such as the UAE and Germany, the fund signifies a global acknowledgement of the urgent necessity to support countries grappling with climate-induced disasters.

However, amidst discussions surrounding this fund, India’s stance becomes crucial as a nation facing substantial damages from climate-related disasters despite its relatively minimal contribution to global carbon emissions. This prompts a critical examination of whether India’s climate leadership could pave the way for equitable solutions within the loss and damage fund. India has emerged as an unwavering force dedicated to confronting the climate crisis. Known for its status as a developing powerhouse, India goes beyond promises, undertaking measures that exhibit resolute commitment. Its steadfast stance and pioneering initiatives offer hope for building effective climate resilience.

Despite historically contributing only 4% of global emissions before the industrial era, India takes on the duty of mitigating climate impacts with unparalleled determination. Its ambitious goal of achieving net-zero emissions by 2070 aligns harmoniously with the objectives of the Paris Agreement. While India ranks as the world’s fourth-largest emitter of global carbon dioxide, trailing China, the US, and the EU, its per capita emissions remain notably lower due to its substantial population. In laying the groundwork for robust action, India has unveiled a comprehensive plan emphasising renewable energy and emissions reduction. Pledging to introduce 500 GW of non-fossil electricity capacity by 2030 and targeting 50% energy generation from renewable sources by the same year, India has committed to reducing emissions by one billion tonnes and slashing emissions intensity of GDP by 45% by 2030.

India strongly advocates for financial aid to address the repercussions of the climate crisis, echoing its support for the African Union’s request for affluent nations to allocate $1 trillion in climate action funds to underdeveloped countries. This stance underscores India’s dedication to championing fair financial assistance for nations affected by the climate crisis. This demand for climate funding is a recognition of historical responsibility and a plea for fair restitution. India’s emphasis on the efficient utilisation and fair distribution of the loss and damage fund’s resources reflects its commitment to offsetting climate-related losses. Investments in resilience-building initiatives, such as robust early warning systems and climate-resilient infrastructure, are pivotal in bolstering resilience against climate-induced disasters.

The trajectory of the loss and damage fund under the World Bank, set to launch in 2024, offers hope, but concerns over governance, allocation, and efficiency persist. While the inclusion of a developing country’s representative signals progress, operational effectiveness remains the true litmus test. Equitable resource distribution, prioritising the most affected areas, and transparent governance are imperative for success.

India’s insistence on fair board representation of the fund emphasises its commitment to amplifying the voices of the most affected regions. This reflects the country’s push for just and equitable climate action, stressing the urgency for substantive contributions to address losses from climate-related disasters. India’s proactive climate stance and advocacy for fair finance signify crucial steps in the global battle against the climate crisis. The loss and damage fund addresses vulnerable nations. Yet, concrete actions, transparent governance, and fair resource allocation are imperative for its effectiveness.

India’s commitment to sustainability, coupled with the fund’s creation, showcases dedication to global resilience. However, actualising the fund’s potential requires tangible steps, transparent governance, and unified global support. All nations, especially developed ones, must honour commitments to ensure climate justice for all. India’s leadership inspires transformative change, offering hope for a world where every nation thrives in harmony with nature.

Ashraf Nehal is a South Asia geopolitical analyst based out of London. The views expressed are personal

Discover the complete story of India's general elections on our exclusive Elections Product! Access all the content absolutely free on the HT App. Download now!

Continue reading with HT Premium Subscription

Daily E Paper I Premium Articles I Brunch E Magazine I Daily Infographics
freemium
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Saturday, April 13, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On