Fund to support nations hit by global warming announced at COP28; India launches Green Credit Initiative


India launched the Green Credit Initiative at the 28th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP28) to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) that is being held at the Expo City, Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

On the first day of the COP28 summit on November 30, a fund to support countries hit by global warming was set up. COP28 President Sultan Ahmed al-Jaber said the decision sent a “positive signal of momentum to the world and our work here in Dubai.”

In his opening remarks, COP28 President Sultan Ahmed al-Jaber emphasized the need for collaborative efforts to reach a consensus on the role of fossil fuels in the transition to a greener economy. His call to action underscores the summit’s focus on industrial decarbonization, fostering a just green energy transition, and spurring innovation for climate action. COP28 stands as a critical platform for shaping the future of global climate policy, with the hope that this year’s summit will mark a turning point in the collective fight against climate change.

At the opening session, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged the developed nations to cut down their carbon footprints and pushed for ‘green credit’ plans, and announced the Green Credit Program (GCP) at the COP28. Under the initiative, those undertaking environmentally positive actions will receive tradable green credits.

Modi also proposed that India will host the COP33 climate summit in 2028. While introducing the Green Credit Initiative to create carbon sinks through people’s participation, he said: “In Glasgow (COP26), I presented to you the vision of LiFE – Lifestyle for Environment. A study by the International Energy Agency says this approach can save 2 billion tons of carbon emissions every year. Today I am calling for another pro-planet initiative that is Green Credits.” Modi addressed the 197 member countries in Hindi. “This is a mass campaign, which goes beyond the commercial mindset of the carbon credits. It focuses on creating carbon sinks through people’s participation.”

GCP is “an innovative market-based mechanism designed to incentivize voluntary environmental actions across diverse sectors, by various stakeholders like individuals, communities, private sector industries, and companies. In its initial phase, GCP focuses on two key activities: water conservation and afforestation. Draft methodologies for awarding green credits have been developed and will be notified for stakeholder consultation,” said the Prime Minister’s Office in a statement.

In the backdrop of geopolitical events like the Israel-Hamas war and Russia’s ongoing “special military operation” in Ukraine, the COP28 holds special significance. For India, COP28 can become the turning point for the implementation of various initiatives and honoring its commitment to achieve the Net Zero emissions target by 2070.

Being among the top greenhouse gas emitters in the world, India is looking towards a clear roadmap on climate financing during the COP28 meeting. In a press conference on Thursday, foreign secretary Vinay Mohan Kwatra said: “We expect a clear roadmap to be agreed at COP28 on climate finance which would be important for delivering on the new, collective, quantified goals,” Kwatra said.

India and other developing nations will keep a close watch on several contentious issues that will be taken up during COP28 – emission mitigation targets, phasing out fossil fuel, financing from developed nations, focus on industry-led solutions, low-carbon innovation, differences between developed and developing nations, progress on operationalizing Paris Agreement Article, reform role of private sector investment and proxy for other issues and relations restoration.

In his address Modi highlighted the demands of developing nations while condemning the historical polluters, noting that the world does not have much time to correct the mistakes of the last century. He also announced the launch of a global digital platform for ideas on climate action and innovations and a data repository.

India and the UAE also co-hosted a high-level side event on green credits at COP28 on Friday. Speaking at the event, Modi said, “We must ensure positive points get added to the health care of the Earth and this is what the Green Credit Program is all about. We must think about how our policies and regulations will add to the green credit of the planet. These green credits would be used in future development, would be tradable, and will be available digitally.” Modi added that the G20 nations decided to triple the renewable energy capacity addition and that “climate finance commitment should be increased from billions to trillions by 2030”. He also urged all nations to work together and asked for a fair share of developing countries in the global carbon budget.

Modi with Prime Minister of Sweden, Ulf Kristersson, co-launched the Phase II of the Leadership Group for Industry Transition (LeadIT 2.0) for the period 2024-26, at COP-28 in Dubai. India and Sweden also launched the Industry Transition Platform to connect the governments, industries, technology providers, researchers, and think tanks of the two countries. India and Sweden co-launched LeadIT at the UN Climate Action Summit in New York in 2019.


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