On 23 November 2020 The Energy and Resource Institute (TERI), the Indian partner of Climate Transparency, organised a national online launch event on the occasion of the 2020 Climate Transparency Report’s release. The event focused on how India can create opportunities for a green and inclusive economic recovery from the Corona crisis. The panelists deep dived in how green stimulus measures can contribute to India meeting the climate goals, while enabling the economy to grow and meet its aspirational goals on SDGs.
Firstly, Mr Ajay Sankar (TERI) presented key components of the Indian Stimulus Package, pointing out at that the Indian GDP fell by 24 per cent in the first quarter of 2020. He focused on renewable energy, electric vehicles and clean cooking energy in India – mentioning that a 600,000 MW of decentralised solar energy through solar tariffs would require an investment of about 30 crores and feed in tariffs for below megawatt installations in Indian villages. Generation of green energy through decentralised models could not only help achieve the renewable target, but also tackle the country’s severe air pollution.
Secondly, Mr Pascal Charriau (Enerdata) focused on the question of what can be expected from the Indian Energy System and the level of emissions in 2020 and beyond. In September 2020, Enerdata estimated that the world economic growth will decline by -4.5% and the energy consumption by -5.9% in 2020. This will in turn lead to global emissions reduction of 8.6%. For India, the change in GDP was projected to be -10.2%, reduction in transport sector consumption about -16% and reductions in energy consumption about -7.5%, which could lead to -8.5% emissions reduction in 2020. For the outlook 2020-2025, a scenario of the growth of energy-related CO2 emissions between 3-7%, depending on taken measures, has been presented. This difference clearly points out at the importance of green stimulus in reducing India’s emissions.
Afterwards, Jeffry Beyer (Vivid Economics) presented the Greenness of Stimulus Index developed by Vivid Economics. This index recognizes that the Corona crisis represents the biggest mobilization of public money in history and that the stimulus packages are an opportunity to address climate change. The Greenness of Stimulus Index therefore looks for alignments between stimulus spending and other priorities in the G20, and how these can be strengthened by following concrete recommendations. According to the Greenness of Stimulus Index, India has a very small green stimulus contribution in the recovery plan.
Mr Chris Beaton (IISD) stated that the measures covered in the India’s recovery package far from being net green. To greener its stimulus package, India should:
– Focus on green industrial policy, including addressing bottlenecks in the domestic manufacturing rather than creating a cost barrier to imports.
– Support renewable energy grid integration – looking at the current situation, there is a gap in terms of support level and the question of how to deal with this gap. Support from the government is required.
– Target assistance to those affected by lack of energy access.
– Increase fossil fuel taxation to raise revenue and consider conditionality for any fossil fuel and related projects.
– Consider avoiding rollbacks and particularly the purchase of high risk and high costs fossil assets.
The event has been concluded by the moderator, Mr RR Rashmi (TERI), emphasising that India needs to do more in terms of a green stimulus and policy changes are necessary, despite the fact that the current crisis showed how uncertain future can be.
Watch the recording from the event here.
INDIA’S COUNTRY PROFILE 2020
INDIA’S NDC TRANSPARENCY CHECK
CLIMATE TRANSPARENCY REPORT 2020