He said that it is not how much carbon you will put into the atmosphere before reaching net zero, but rather how much carbon you plan to add to the atmosphere.
The United States of America, Britain, and Europe have set a 2050 target date to reach net Zero. At that point, they will emit only the amount of greenhouse gases that can absorb by trees, crops, soils, and still-embryonic CO capture technology.
Both China and Saudi Arabia have set targets for 2060. But critics claim that these targets are meaningless if there is no tangible action.
Gupta stated that the United States will release 92 gigatons and the EU 62 gigatons of carbon into our atmosphere between now and the middle century. This is based on calculations by the Indian government. He said that China would have added a remarkable 450 gigatons of carbon by its net zero date.
Nearly 200 countries will gather in Glasgow, Scotland, between October 31 and November 12 to discuss climate issues. The purpose of the talks is to strengthen global warming mitigation efforts under the 2015 Paris Agreement.
Officials say that Narendra Modi, the Indian Prime Minister, will attend the conference as a sign of how serious the country takes climate change. Xi Jinping, the Chinese President, is not expected to attend.
Countries are expected to set new and stronger intermediate targets for reducing emissions while working towards net zero.
Bhupendra Yadav, Environment Minister, said India was on track for achieving the Paris 2015 conference targets and left the door open for revising them. He stated that “all options are on the table”.
India has committed that it will reduce its GDP’s emission intensity by 33%-35% between 2005 levels and 2030. This would be a 24% reduction from 2016.
According to some experts, India could reduce its emissions intensity by up to 40% if it has access and is able to finance it.
Yadav stated that the Glasgow conference’s success would be measured by the amount of climate finance provided to the developing countries to reduce their carbon emissions and promote economic growth.
He said, “We can’t make it on our own because we need to think about the economy as well.”
Yadav clarified that India would not feel pressured to reduce emissions if developed countries are not meeting their climate targets.
Coal is the worst form of energy, and scientists believe that it is essential to phase out the use. However, more than 70% of India’s electricity comes from coal-fired thermal power stations.
Yadav stated that India should not reduce its coal production. “Even developed countries are taking their time to exit the coal and gas sector.”
Gupta, the environment secretary said that India’s growing energy requirements to feed its 1.3 billion people will not stop increasing.
Gupta stated that this will partly be achieved by retiring inefficient power plants and decommissioning them, while new ones are being constructed.
“Forcing sectoral agendas is not good. He added that we would (take a call about coal production) at our own pace.”