Going by the median age of print media readers and average life expectancy in India, you and I will be dead in the next 50 years. However, we will leave behind a world for future generations.
First, let us understand the problem. According to UN experts, Climate change is the greatest threat the world has ever faced. Climate change is the average weather in a place over many years. However, the world has recently experienced rapid changes in the moderate climate. As the population is growing, the energy demand is increasing. To fulfill this demand, more and more traditional fossil fuels are burnt, thus causing the release of CO2 and other greenhouse gases- resulting in an overall increase in the temperature.
As a result, the world is now 1.10C warmer, with global CO2 up by 50% compared to the early 19th century. Climate trackers believe this could go up to 2.40C by the end of the current century.
This may look like a small number, but the impact is not tiny by any comparison. This is a major threat to our lives and livelihood. Regions are turning into deserts and becoming inhabitable. Extreme temperatures are leading to wildfires. In other areas, this is leading to excessive rainfall and consequent floods.
If we look at India, we are the third largest in terms of Greenhouse gas emissions in the world and the main culprit for this is Coal. However, in recent times, India has taken a lot of steps to combat climate change.
As the world leaders meet at the 27th Annual meeting on climate change, India will be ready to share its success stories and focus on steps they will take to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. Currently, India generates 40% of its electricity from Non-Fossil fuel sources and is making many efforts to reduce its dependency on coal. In addition, India has launched multiple programs that have been a success, like the National Solar Mission, National Mission for Enhanced Energy Efficiency, National Mission on Sustainable Habitat, National Mission for Green India, etc.
India believes that climate action starts from the grassroots, i.e., individual level, and the same will be on display in the India Pavilion, reminding everyone that a simple lifestyle and personal practices are sustainable. Indian civilizations have practised and led sustainable lifestyles for over generations. Eco-friendly habits are coded in Indians’ DNA.
Hence, India will focus on its mission for Life movement, which will focus on transforming people into pro-planet individuals who as a community, will adopt sustainable practices in the modern world.
India is also a firm believer in the power of Renewable Energy and aims to have 50% of its entire electricity generation from renewable sources by 2030 by increasing its non-fossil fuel capacity to 500 GW. India is firmly investing in policies that are helping people adopt solar for electricity and electric vehicles for their mobility needs. However, this is very heavily dependent on global support.
India will also look forward to discussions on climate finance and look forward to discussions on new technologies and collaboration, as these two things are critical at this stage because one must realize, climate change will never be a country-specific problem to combat it, everyone should contribute by sharing the knowledge and making sustainable choices more accessible and affordable.
Gaurav Keswani is the AVP of HomeScape by Amplus Solar