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COP26: India's PM Modi commits to net-zero emissions by 2070

Highlights

Renewables goal increased to 500 GW

Goal of 50% of clean energy by 2030

To reduce CO2 intensity by 45% by 2030

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi has committed India to net-zero carbon emissions by 2070 in an address to the UN Climate Conference in Glasgow Nov. 1.

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He also announced an increase in the country's installed renewable energy capacity goal from 450 GW to 500 GW by 2030, aimed at meeting 50% of the country's energy needs, up from 40% previously.

Noting India represented 17% of the world's population but only 5% of its emissions, Modi said the world "acknowledges India is the only big economy to deliver on the letter and the spirit of its Paris commitments."

In other new commitments, Modi said India would reduce the carbon intensity of its economy by 45% by 2030.

"Between now and 2050, India would reduce its total projected carbon emissions by one billion mt, and by 2070 India will achieve the target of net-zero emissions," he said.

India has until now held off from committing to a net-zero target, choosing to focus on an ambitious renewable energy program while calling on the developed world to accelerate its funding efforts to the developing world.

"India expects developed countries to make $1 trillion available as climate finance as soon as possible. Today, just as we track progress on climate mitigation, so we must track climate finance. Justice will be served if pressure is put on those countries that have not lived up to their climate commitments," Modi said.

India's CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion are projected by S&P Global Platts Analytics to rise to three billion mt under a reference case by 2035, while under a Two Degrees outlook its emissions would need to fall to just over two billion mt by then.