Government Report: India’s Emission Intensity Decreased by 33% between 2005 and 2019

The report also stated that India’s GDP increased at a cumulative annual growth rate of 7% during this time, but the country’s emissions increased by only 4% annually, indicating that the nation has been successful in separating its economic expansion from greenhouse gas emissions that warm the planet.

In 2005 and 2019, India cut its GDP emission intensity by 33%, meeting the target 11 years ahead of schedule, according to a government report.

The report also stated that India’s GDP increased at a cumulative annual growth rate of 7% during this time, but the country’s emissions increased by only 4% annually, indicating that the nation has been successful in separating its economic expansion from greenhouse gas emissions that warm the planet.

During the current climate talks in Dubai, the report known as “The Third National Communication to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change” will be presented to the UN climate change body, according to officials.

A nation’s greenhouse gas emissions, susceptibility to climate change, and the steps it is taking to reduce emissions and prepare for its effects are all included in national communications.

According to Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav, India met the target eleven years ahead of schedule by reducing its GDP emission intensity by 33% between 2005 and 2019. During this time, India produced 1.97 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent of additional carbon sink.

Nonetheless, compared to 2016, the nation’s overall emissions—which include emissions from the land-use, land-use change, and forestry sectors—have increased by 4.56%. The total amount of greenhouse gases emitted for each unit increase in gross domestic product (GDP) is referred to as the economy’s emission intensity. In contrast to absolute emissions, it is not.

“We are well on track to achieve the target of reducing our GDP emissions intensity by 45 per cent by 2030, compared to the 2005 level, and of creation of additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3.0 billion tonnes through tree and forest cover by 2030,” said the minister.

Any nation’s national action plans to keep the average global temperature increase to well below two degrees Celsius, and ideally to 1.5 degrees Celsius, relative to pre-industrial (19850–1900) levels are known as Nationally Determined Contributions, or NDCs.

Scientists predict that if the 1.5 degree Celsius safety barrier is crossed, the effects of climate change—such as heat or cold waves, floods, cyclones, heavy rains, glacier melting, and subsequent sea level rise—will be more severe.

The largest percentage of anthropogenic emissions (75.81%) was attributed to the energy sector, followed by waste (2.34%), agriculture (13.44%), industrial process and product use (8.41%), and agriculture (13.44%), according to the third national communication.

4,85,472 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (GgCO2e) of emissions were eliminated by the LULUCF sector. India’s net national emissions for 2019 were 26,46,556 GgCO2e, or 2.6 billion tonnes of CO2e, when total emissions and removals are taken into account.

India is one of the twenty-six developing nations that have filed their national communication using the 2019 or later GHG (Greenhouse Gas) inventory as a basis. China has sent in its most recent communication, which includes the GHG inventory from 2014, Saudi Arabia from 2012, Brazil from 2016, and South Africa from 2017.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday suggested that India host the yearly UN climate talks in the nation in 2028, positioning his country as a global climate leader that has met its earlier NDC targets well in advance of schedule.

Following the G20 Summit earlier this year, India would host the UN climate conference in 2028 or COP33 if its proposal is approved. This would be the nation’s next major international gathering. In contrast to the extravagant event it has grown into over the years, India’s 2002 hosting of COP8 in New Delhi was a modest gathering.

Modi emphasized that although 17% of the world’s population resides in India, the country contributes less than 4% of global carbon emissions. “India is one of the very few economies in the world that is on track to achieve its NDC targets,” he stated.

India met its non-fossil fuel targets nine years ahead of schedule and its emissions intensity-related targets eleven years ahead of the committed time frame. The nation wants to attain 50% installed capacity of non-fossil fuel-based electric power by 2030, and a 45% reduction in GDP emission intensity from 2005 levels by the same year. Additionally, it pledged to transition to a net zero economy by 2070.

During COP28, the prime minister also criticized wealthy countries, claiming that while a small portion of humanity has been indiscriminately exploiting nature for the past century, everyone is paying a price for it, particularly those in the Global South. He said that although making minimal contributions to the climate crisis, poor and developing countries suffer disproportionately from its effects.

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