US and 117 nations pledge to boost renewable energy at COP28, India and China abstain


A pledge to triple installed renewable energy capacity by 2030 got the nod from 118 nations, including the US, at the COP28 climate summit in Dubai on December 2, though India and China were significant absentees from the list. However, the final COP 28 agreement is scheduled to be announced by December 12. The US also announced a multi-year pledge of $3 billion for the Green Climate Fund (GCF) during the summit on Saturday, December 2.

The Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge aims to boost the installed renewable energy generation capacity to at least 11,000 GW by 2030 and reduce global dependence on fossil fuels. Though China and India have endorsed the threefold increase in renewable energy by 2030 earlier, neither of them formally supported the comprehensive pledge on Saturday. The International Energy Agency says the world must triple its renewable energy capacity and double the rate of energy efficiency by 2030 to drive down demand for fossil fuels and limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius by the end of the century.

The plan to announce the increase in renewable energy capacity and energy efficiency at COP-28 was initiated by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen earlier this year, and the decision took the shape of a concrete proposal during the New Delhi G20 declaration in September 2023.

As part of the Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge, the 118 nations have pledged to triple worldwide installed renewable energy generation capacity to at least 11,000 gigawatts (GW) and to double the global average annual rate of energy efficiency improvements to more than 4 percent by 2030. As part of its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), India has committed to installing 500 GW of electricity from non-fossil fuel sources by 2030. The United States and Brazil have the second and third-largest installed renewable energy capacity followed by India. Both the U.S. and Brazil signed the pledge along with Japan, Australia, Canada, Chile, Brazil, Nigeria, and Barbados.

US Vice President Kamala Harris joined the global leaders in endorsing a pledge to triple global renewable generation capacity and double the global average annual rate of energy efficiency improvements. The United States also joined over two dozen countries in announcing a Declaration to Triple Nuclear Energy from 2020 levels by 2050. The Declaration recognizes the key role of new nuclear power in achieving global net zero goals and identifies the need for high-level political engagement to spur further action on nuclear power.

The United States also announced a multi-year pledge of $3 billion for the Green Climate Fund (GCF) for its Second Replenishment (GCF-2), 2024-2027, at COP 28 on Saturday, December 2. The Green Climate Fund is the world’s largest multilateral climate fund and a much-needed source of concessional finance. The U.S. government is working with the GCF’s new Executive Director and other board members on an ambitious agenda to make it more effective and responsive to countries and is partnering with the private sector to maximize its impact.

The GCF enables countries to accelerate the energy transition, assists communities around the world in building resilience to the impacts of the climate crisis, and mobilizes private capital for climate action. Through this pledge to support the GCF’s second replenishment and its role on the Board, the US will help boost these efforts. Now, the US has joined a group of more than 25 countries that have already pledged financial support to the second GCF replenishment.

EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan and National Climate Advisor Ali Zaidi announced a final rule that will sharply reduce methane and other harmful air pollutants from the oil and natural gas industry, including from hundreds of thousands of existing sources nationwide. Joined by New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham and Environmental Defense Fund President Fred Krupp, Regan, and Zaidi outlined how the rule will promote the use of cutting-edge methane detection technologies and deliver significant economic and public health benefits.

The US, China, and the United Arab Emirates also convened a summit to accelerate actions to cut methane and other non-CO2 greenhouse gases. Participating countries announced new methane commitments and hundreds of millions of dollars in new grant funding for methane reduction. During the climate summit in Dubai, Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry and Special Representative of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan on International Environmental Cooperation Zulfiya Suleimenova issued a Joint Statement on Accelerating Methane Mitigation to Achieve the Global Methane Pledge.


Bihar praised at COP28 for afforestation efforts

While India is yet to clear its stance on the Global Renewables and Energy Efficiency Pledge, Bihar’s efforts for afforestation drew applause from the global audience at the COP28 climate summit on Saturday, December 2. The state’s afforestation projects under the Jal-Jeevan-Hariyali Abhiyan were showcased at a session on ‘Building Climate Resilience’ where senior officials of the Bihar government told the participants about the state’s green initiatives and its commitment to climate resilience.



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