The Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Textiles, Shri Piyush Goyal today gave three action points to climate warriors. He called upon the climate warriors to adopt Climateprenurship as a mission and asked them to ensure that 21st century inventions ushered in a new dawn of climate justice. He asked for growth to be decoupled from Carbon emissions with greater industry participation and investment in technology for Renewable Energy, Hydrogen and Electric Vehicles. Thirdly, he said that change must start at home. He asked households in India to shift to sustainable, organic, natural products in daily life.
He was addressing “ONLY ONE EARTH – a discussion on Environment”, a Special Interactive Session on Environment organized by the India Pavilion and Bhamla Foundation at Expo 2020.
Shri Piyush Goyal expressed happiness that environment and sustainability had taken centre stage at the Dubai Expo. He also appreciated the Bhamla Foundation for completing 25 years in relentless pursuit of conservation and sustainability. He also expressed his gratitude to the UAE leadership for giving India Pavilion a place of pride at the World Expo 2020 in Dubai.
It may be noted that the India Pavilion received 1.2 million footfalls, one of the highest at the Expo.
Shri Goyal opined that the India Pavilion was a perfect example of bringing sustainability into action, as it had been constructed on principles of water and energy, conservation and recycling. The Minister also congratulated the India Pavilion for hosting wide ranging discussions on topics like Biodiversity, Wildlife, Conservation, Climate Action and Emerging Opportunities in Renewable Energy.
Shri Goyal observed that sustainability came naturally to India and Indians. Citing a number of festivals such as Makar Sankranti, Pongal and Bihu, he said that such Indian festivals, rituals, songs, and myths celebrated the abundant gifts of Mother Earth.
Quoting Mahatma Gandhi, the Minister said, “Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not every man’s greed”. He added that as a signatory to the Paris Agreement, Modi Government had walked the talk on green energy. India is the only G20 nation well on track to achieve the goals mentioned under Paris Agreement, he said.
Listing the many milestones India had achieved in the field of renewable energy, the Minister said that India’s installed non-fossil energy capacity, which is the 4th largest in the world, had increased by almost 300% in the last 7.5 years and stood at more than 150 GW today. He added that India had one of the world’s lowest solar tariffs at Rs 2.14 kW/h.
Highlighting the several Initiatives India had taken on the sustainable and green energy front in last few years, Shri Goyal said that India’s initiative to convert incandescent lights to LED lights (UJALA) was an example worthy of emulation by the world.
Shri Goyal referred to the 5 nectar elements or Panchamrit given by the Prime Minister at COP26 in Glasgow and said that these goals reinforced India’s commitment to sustainable energy. These goals are to reach non-fossil energy capacity of 500 GW by 2030, to meet 50% of our energy requirements from renewable energy by 2030, to reduce carbon emissions by 1 billion tonnes by 2030, to reduce economy’s carbon intensity by 45% by 2030 and to achieve the target of Net Zero by 2070.
The Minister said that India’s vision for development was based on 5P’s – People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace and Partnership. We are not just fastest growing economy of the world, but also the fastest growing green economy of the world, the Minister added.
Shri Piyush Goyal said that the Union budget 2022 was a testament to the Government’s commitment to achieve a sustainable future. He outlined some major budgetary provisions that reinforced India’s commitment to green industrialization, such as the sovereign green bonds and additional allocation for solar PLI scheme.
The Minister asserted that India aspired to be a leading Hydrogen economy of the world and added that under National Hydrogen Mission, India aimed to reduce the cost of Hydrogen to half, from Rs 350/kg to Rs 160/kg by 2030. Terming Hydrogen as ‘Fuel of the future’ the he expressed hope that vehicles would soon run on Hydrogen.
Speaking of India’s initiatives in the field of Biofuels, Shri Piyush Goyal said that as leading agri producer, India was focusing on converting sugarcane and food grains to Ethanol, the blending of which would reduce dependence on fuel imports. He added that India had the potential to be a world leader in biofuels.
The Minister underscored the Government’s focus on converting ‘Waste to Energy’ and ‘Waste to Wealth’.
Referring to India’s largest Bio-CNG plant which was inaugurated by PM Modi in Madhya Pradesh, Shri Goyal said that India, with the highest number of livestock in the world, has been using livestock waste to produce energy.
Quoting the Prime Minister, Shri Goyal said that ‘World is witnessing depletion of all types of natural resources. In such a scenario, circular economy is the demand of the hour’. He added that in pursuit of the mantras of Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, India had taken numerous initiatives for a circular economy. India now processes 70% of its waste under Swachh Bharat 2.0 (Urban), he said.
The Minister said that India aspired to be free of single-use plastic by 2022. Referring to the huge number of startups that are engaged in the sustainability sector, he said that since 2014, India had seen an investment of USD 2.1 Billion flowing into the Climate technology startups in India.
Shri Goyal also appreciated the award winners, Shri Vikram Shroff, Director, UPL (Professional Excellence Corporate Award), Shri Rohit Kochar, Regional President, Indo American Chamber of Commerce (Pandemic professional excellence Award), Shri Raj Shetty, Chairman and Managing Worker, Ramee Group of Companies (Professional Excellence Corporate Awards).
The Minister concluded with the thought that sustainable living was no longer an option for us. Today, there is a need for all of us to come together and take Lifestyle For Environment (LIFE) forward as a campaign. Let’s preserve Mother Earth to preserve Humanity, he said.