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Guest Column

India Inc on 'Net Zero' path

  • from Shaastra :: vol 01 issue 01 :: Jan - Feb 2022

For India to realise its emissions commitment, industry will need to step up. It appears that companies are taking the lead.

India book-ended the COP26 climate change conference in November 2021 with two high-profile announcements. At the opening plenary, Prime Minister Narendra Modi committed India to achieving 'Net Zero' emissions by 2070, and strengthened the country's 2030 commitments. This drew universal applause. But that sentiment gave way to gasps of disbelief when, at the closing plenary, Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav intervened to get the term "phase-out" of coal diluted to "phase-down" in the final text of the Glasgow Climate Pact.

India's new 2030 commitments were a significant step-up from previous targets and are estimated to require an investment of over $1 trillion. To put that amount in perspective, even $100 billion in UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change) public finance commitments have remained unmet.

While global negotiators deliberated, the financial world announced that it was moving to realign private capital flows to support a Net Zero world. The Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero (GFANZ), established with over $130 trillion of private capital commitment over three decades, will look to transform the global economy towards meeting Net Zero ambitions. Some of these 450 companies from 45 countries have already responded with action that will align their portfolios with the aim of limiting global warming to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.

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