Improving India’s Carbon Neutrality

Improving India’s Carbon Neutrality

  • 3rd March 2021
  • Mumbai, India
  • Climate Change | Energy | Waste

Written By: Srijita Gupta

The Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA) on 11 January, 2021, issued a statement announcing the launch of a roadmap to reach ‘net-zero’ by 2050.
While more than 100 companies have announced their net-zero ambitions, many countries including India have not yet expressed their interests in doing the same.

Before proceeding further, we need to understand what ‘net-zero’ emissions mean. This process involves a combination of approaches aiming to reduce and remove emissions. This is done to maintain a balance between Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions produced and removed from the atmosphere. The IEA aims to provide a plan which has a holistic approach but we need to realise that countries have different environmental issues, levels of economic capacity and carbon emissions. Hence, the strategies will not be easily applicable by all countries.

India’s CO2 emissions were 2.3 GT in 2019 and despite emission reductions in 2020, the numbers are expected to go up again in the following years. In order to absorb high doses of C02, a new concept of Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) has been introduced. The issue with CCS is that apart from being an extremely expensive form of technology, they have to look for potential reservoirs for storage, have a stable geological environment and have very little demand. The founders of this technology can only enter the market if there is sufficient demand and this demand will increase only if the costs are low.

Government intervention is the only practical solution here. The Indian government has a dominant position in the power sector which accounts for almost 54% of India’s annual carbon emissions and their investment in the CCS technology will generate positive results. Government of India should identify generating stations which are centrally-owned and have sufficient life to set up CCS units in these plants. Initial government investment may trigger a fall in capital costs, which may lead to further adoption of the technology.
Source: News Agencies