India ranks 10th on Climate Performance Index - GulfToday

India ranks 10th on Climate Performance Index

Meena Janardhan

Writer/Editor/Consultant. She has over 25 years of experience in the fields of environmental journalism and publishing.

Narendra Modi

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi speaks during the recently-concluded COP26 conference in Glasgow. Reuters

India maintained its 10th rank like last year and continued to be among the top-performing countries within the Group of 20 in the Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) 2022 report.

The Scandinavian countries score high; Denmark took the pole fourth position in the climate performance list with 76.92% score, followed by Sweden and Norway with 74.46 and 73.62% scores respectively (‘high’ rating).

The UK did well by occupying seventh position though it has slipped two positions since last year. As last year, Denmark has high ratings; it ranks in the top 10 for each category. In greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and renewable energy, Denmark is up two spots, and in Climate Policy it is up three from last year.

However, the report says, “Countries with high rankings have no reason to sit back and relax. No country performs well enough in all CCPI index categories to achieve an overall very high rating. The first three positions in the overall ranking therefore remain empty. This says a great deal.

Even if all countries were as committed as the current frontrunners, it would still not be enough to prevent dangerous climate change...The countries with high rankings also have no reason to ease up. Even greater efforts and actions by governments are needed to set the world on track to keep global warming well below a 2°C increase. Even better, 1.5°C.”

The report pointed out that India maintained a strong performance like last year. The report rated the performance ‘high’ in the GHG emissions, energy use and climate policy categories, and medium in renewable energy.

It states, India “is already on track to meet its 2030 emissions target (which is compatible with a well-below-2°C scenario), close to achieving its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) target of a 40% share for non-fossil fuel installed power capacity by 2030, and on course for a targeted 33–35% reduction in energy intensity by the same year.”

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi had earlier announced steps to reduce emissions, which included setting 2070 as country’s Net Zero target year.

According to the report, “India should set Net Zero target for 2050 and leverage its domestic success on renewables and emissions intensity into international initiatives. More could be done to strengthen policies on climate vulnerability, adaptation, and resilience building. Equity and social development should also feature more strongly in the energy transition.”

Contributing to India’s strong performance this year, the CCPI country experts highlight the considerable improvement of renewables targets and the focus on implementation and achievement of NDC targets.

The experts also stress India’s ambitious renewable energy policies, such as its targets of renewable electricity capacity of 450 GW and a 30% electric vehicle share by 2030. The experts do, however, believe some policies are disjointed and missing detail on implementation and long-term targets. Meanwhile, considerably more can be done to promote growth of solar (notably, as mentioned, renewable energy was the only category not rated high). No Indian states have announced a clear coal phase-out. In fact, the pipeline of proposed coal power plant development is the world’s second largest and one of the few that have increased since 2015.

There have been initiatives to promote more electric vehicles in the transport sector, and the experts demand expansion and better infrastructure of such vehicles.

The report has found that major emitting economies that announced their net zero emission release targets fared poorly in their climate change performance over 2021. The United States, despite improving marginally since it re-entered global climate negotiation process when President Joe Biden took charge, ranked 55th within 65 countries considered with ‘very low’ rating.

China slipped down four places compared to 2020 to occupy 37th position and a ‘low’ rating. The European Union also slid six places compared to year before, and occupied 22nd position and ‘medium’ rating.

Published by German-watch along with Climate Action Network (CAN) and New Climate Institute, the report was released November 10 on the sidelines of the 26th session of the Conference of the Parties (CoP26) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

The CCPI evaluates 60 countries and the European Union, which together generate 90%+ of global greenhouse gas emissions. Using standardized criteria, the CCPI looks at four categories, with 14 indicators: GHG emissions (40% of the overall score), renewable energy (20%), energy use (20%) and climate policy (20%). Its climate policy section evaluates countries’ progress in implementing policies working towards achieving the Paris Agreement goals.

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