Modi says India targets net zero emissions by 2070

GLASGOW, Nov 1 (Reuters) – India’s prime minister on Monday used the COP26 climate talks to announce 2070 as the target for his country to reach net zero carbon emissions, two decades beyond what scientists say is needed to avert catastrophic climate impacts.

Narendra Modi defended India, however, as having stuck to its climate pledges “in spirit and letter” and noted that his country contained 17% of the world’s population but was responsible for only 5% of global emissions.

A COP official welcomed the 2030 pledge but expressed surprise at the 2070 goal, which is beyond China’s net zero target of 2060. The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said there was hope India might bring 2070 forward.

It said it was more important for the world to lay out credible pathways to reduce emissions.

China and Saudi Arabia have both set targets of 2060, but critics say these are largely meaningless without tangible action now.

 Scientists say the world needs to halve global emissions by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050 to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.

In his speech, Modi also called for a global push to adopt sustainable lifestyles.

 “Instead of mindless and destructive consumption we need mindful and deliberate utilisation,” he said, citing consumer choices in areas from packaging to diet.

“These choices, made by billions of people, can take the fight against climate change one step further,” he said.

Reporting by Mark John; Additional reporting by Elizabeth Piper; Editing by Katy Daigle
Source : Reuters