India Increases National Action on Climate Change

By Anjali Jaiswal on NRDC Switchboard, March 9 2010

India recently announced both a “clean energy tax” on coal to create a national fund to support renewable energy projects and a “tax break” for imports on renewable energy equipment. The clean energy tax levies $1 per metric ton of coal, while the tax break reduces by 5 percent the import tax on renewable energy equipment. Both measures aim to bolster cleantech investments and innovation to meet India’s national target to reduce emissions intensity of its GDP by 20-25 percent from 2005 levels by 2020 as submitted to the United Nations on January 31 (as NRDC is tracking here). India continues to announce increased domestic action on climate change, while resisting international pressure to commit to binding targets in the lead up to Mexico.

Measures like the clean energy tax demonstrate India’s commitment to vigorous domestic action. As Prime Minister Singh emphasized during TERI’s 10th Delhi Sustainable Development Summit, India “fully support[s]” the Copenhagen Accord.” He also provided India’s perspective as a developing country. “Climate action that delays or makes more difficult the basic task of poverty eradication will be difficult to implement. That is why in our National Action Plan on Climate Change, we have given priority to those activities that mitigate greenhouse gas emissions and also deliver substantial collateral benefits by reducing poverty or by improving local environmental quality and human health.”

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