Home > News > Apex panel set up to oversee India’s climate change goals, 13 ministries involved | India News

Apex panel set up to oversee India’s climate change goals, 13 ministries involved | India News

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NEW DELHI: A month ahead of Paris Agreement on Climate Change becoming operational, India has set up an apex committee, comprising members from its 13 key ministries, to coordinate actions for achieving its goals under the global deal. The agreement will officially come into force from January 1, 2021.
The apex body will also function as a national authority to regulate carbon markets in India under the Paris Agreement in post-2020 period. Its roles will include issuing guidelines for carbon pricing and market mechanism to offset carbon footprints of emitters.
A gazette notification, issued by the environment ministry on November 27, enlists as many as 16 functions for this body which will have power to issue directions under Section 5 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 to industries or any entities for compliance on cleaner practices in sync with India’s goals.
Headed by environment secretary, R P Gupta, the 17-member Committee will define responsibilities of concerned ministries for fulfilling India’s ‘nationally determined contribution’ (NDC) pledges and receive periodic information updates to monitor, review and revisit climate goals to meet the requirements of the Paris Agreement.
The Committee, comprising India’s key climate negotiator and additional secretary in environment ministry Ravi Shankar Prasad as its vice-chairperson, will also develop programme and policies, if required, to make India’s domestic climate actions compliant with its international obligations.
The Paris Agreement, approved by 195 countries in 2015, aims to minimize the threat of climate change by keeping an average global temperature rise this century well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and to make efforts to limit the temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
As part of its contribution to the collective global efforts, India has three quantitative goals such as reduction in the emissions intensity of GDP by 33-35% by 2030 from 2005 level; achieving about 40% cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel based energy resources by 2030; and creating an additional carbon sink of 2.5 to 3 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent through additional forest and tree cover by 2030.
The ministries whose representatives have given place as ex-officio members in the Committee include environment, finance, external affairs, agriculture, water resources (Jal Shakti), power, new and renewable energy, earth sciences, health, rural development, commerce & industry, science & technology and urban affairs. Besides, a senior official from Niti Aayog is also one of the members.
Referring to the need of having an Apex Committee for Implementation of Paris Agreement (AIPA), the ministry said its purpose would be to ensure a “coordinated response on climate change matters that protects the country’s interests and ensures that India is on track towards meeting its climate change obligations under the Paris Agreement including its submitted NDCs”.
The AIPA will have to submit report about its activity at least once in six months to the central government.

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