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India sets goal to cut emissions by 35%

India sets goal to cut emissions by 35%
Highlights

India on Friday pledged to cut its emission levels by 33-35 percent over the next 15 years in what Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar termed an ambitious, fair and balanced commitment to protect the environment, married to the country\'s own agenda for sustainable development.

New Delhi: India on Friday pledged to cut its emission levels by 33-35 percent over the next 15 years in what Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar termed an ambitious, fair and balanced commitment to protect the environment, married to the country's own agenda for sustainable development.

Ahead of the crucial 21st meeting of the Conference of Parties (CoP) under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change due in Paris from November 30 to December 11, India made a 38-page submission under what is called the Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs).

The submissions, called from the 196 parties (or countries) under the framework, are to serve as the basis for negotiating an agreement laying the path for a low-carbon, climate-resilient future. So far, 120 countries, collectively accounting for 85.3 percent of global emissions, have made submissions.

"Through this submission, India intends to reduce the emissions intensity of its GDP by 33-35 percent by 2030 from 2005 level. This commitment is further echoed in India's actions in climate change adaptation with the setting up of its own 'National Adaptation Fund'," said New Delhi's document.

India's INDCs are "fair and ambitious", considering the fact that it is balancing goals of a "low carbon emission pathway" and "all developmental challenges the country faces today",

it said, adding the country's current policy framework also includes a favourable environment for a rapid increase in renewable energy, move towards low carbon sustainable development and adapting to impact of climate change.

"Accordingly, India's development plans will continue to lay a balanced emphasis on economic development and environment," it said, recounting the framework's mandate based on principles of equity, as also common but differentiated responsibilities and respective capabilities of member-nations.

India's paper, the release of which coincides with Mahatma Gandhi's birth anniversary, is based on the 1992 Kyoto convention and says that both in terms of cumulative global emissions and per capita emission,

it has caused much less damage to the environment but its actions to mitigate climate change were fair and ambitious. "Much before the climate change debate began,

Mahatma Gandhi, regarded as the father of our nation, had said that we should act as 'trustees' and use natural resources wisely as it is our moral responsibility to ensure that we bequeath to the future generations a healthy planet," it said.

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