Published on September 14th, 2009 | by Zachary Shahan4
$1.1 Trillion to Cut Carbon Emissions in India
September 14th, 2009 by Zachary Shahan
The United Nations stated a couple weeks ago that developed (rich) countries need to provide developing countries with about $500-600 billion a year to control global warming. This was a big increase from other predictions.
Big portions of these funds need to go to India, a large developing country that includes about one sixth of the world’s population. A new study shows what is needed to significantly cut growth in greenhouse gases in this top country.
A new estimate of what India needs to switch to clean energy and seriously reduce its greenhouse gas growth comes to a total of about $874 billion to $1.1 trillion (over the course of several years). This is from leading business consultant firm McKinsey&Company.
Reducing Carbon Emissions in India by 2030
The report released last week, Environmental and Energy Sustainability: An Approach for India, said that India could cut its emissions in half by 2030 largely by investing in clean energy and implementing energy efficient measures. The effect: greenhouse gas emissions will grow from about 1.6 billion tons (in 2005) to about 2.8 billion tons (instead of 6.5 billion tons) in 2030.
The main ways in which India could cut emissions would be by investing in clean energy and implementing energy efficient measures (resulting in 28-34% in reductions). Additionally, however, investing in clean transportation, sustainable housing, and improved agriculture/forestry practices could reduce emissions by another 22-26%.
As the study says, India could become a world leader in green technology and in other areas of society as well if it takes this road to a greener future. “Considering that 80 per cent of the India of 2030 is yet to be built, the country may have a unique opportunity to pursue development while managing emissions growth, enhancing its energy security and creating a few world-scale clean technology industries.” In particular, India could be a leading pioneer in clean coal, solar energy, smart grids, and energy-efficient building technologies according to the authors. With proper investment, it could lead the world, but timing is key. As the report also says: “long-term planning and timely action will be critical… even a five-year delay in making the necessary investments could result in a loss of one-fourth of the identified abatement potential.”
There is big opportunity for India to become a world leader and an economic powerhouse in the near future. If it invests in rapidly developing green technology sectors, it could help to save the world (from climate change disaster) and leap into the front of the global economy. This is a significant lead-in to the climate change meeting in Copenhagen in December. Will India take this road?
Image Credit 1: jpereira_net via flickr under a Creative Commons license