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'India, China Taking up Leadership Roles on Reducing Carbon Emissions'

CAT has called India a “possible” leader in the renewable energy market along with the European Union and China, while claiming that the US will fall behind these countries

Tushar Dhara | News18.com

Updated:June 2, 2017, 12:43 PM IST
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'India, China Taking up Leadership Roles on Reducing Carbon Emissions'
Representative Image. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)

New Delhi: Countries like India and China are taking up climate leadership roles, Climate Action Tracker (CAT), a global initiative that tracks carbon emissions, has said. This comes as President Donald Trump announced that the United States would be pulling out of the Paris Agreement.

CAT has called India a “possible” leader in the renewable energy market along with the European Union and China, while claiming that the US will fall behind these countries.

“The advance of renewable energy globally meant that market pressures towards clean energy solutions will not favour President Trump’s desire to expand coal use in the country,” CAT said.

Even before US President Donald Trump announced that the United States would pull out of the Paris Agreement its rating on climate action was ‘Medium’.

The Climate Action Tracker, a global initiative that tracks climate action covering 80% of global carbon emissions said on its website:

“President Trump’s announcement that the US will pull out of the Paris Agreement is a severe backwards move and an abrogation of its responsibility as the world’s second largest emitter. The US move comes at a time when more, not less, commitment is needed from all governments to avert the worst impacts of climate change.”

CAT, a coalition of leading research institutes, said that it would update the US’s rating when it submits the formal communication about its decision to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

In his “America First Energy Plan”, President Trump committed to eliminating “burdensome regulations on our energy industry” and to reviving America’s coal industry. With his Executive Order on “energy independence,” President Trump began the process of “suspending, revising, and rescinding” a number of existing policies, including the Clean Power Plan. He also rescinded the Obama Administration’s Climate Action Plan.

CAT said that in order to meet its 2025 Paris Agreement commitment, wherein the US should be reducing emissions by 26–28% below 2005 levels, the country would have had to implement both the Clean Power Plan and the Obama Administration’s full Climate Action Plan.

“Without further policies, the US will miss its 2025 NDC commitment by a large margin,” CAT said.

The “medium” rating indicates that the US’s climate plans are at the least ambitious end of what would be a fair contribution. This means it is not consistent with limiting warming to below 2°C, let alone with the Paris Agreement’s stronger 1.5°C limit, unless other countries make much deeper reductions and comparably greater effort, according to CAT.

Under the Paris Agreement, all parties have agreed to develop long-term low greenhouse gas emission development strategies. The Obama Administration submitted a “Mid-Century Strategy for Deep Decarbonization” (The White House 2016), in which it set an emissions reduction target of 80% or more below 2005 levels in 2050.

climate graph 1
Data courtesy Climate Action Tracker

| Edited by: Aditya Nair
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