India Announces Carbon Intensity Target

WASHINGTON (December 3, 2009) – India will cut its carbon intensity by 20-25 percent from 2005 levels by 2020, according to an announcement today by India’sMinister of State for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh on the floor of the Parliament.

The following is a statement from Jacob Scherr, International Program Director at the Natural Resources Defense Council:

“This is an important pledge that moves international climate negotiations forward and further confirms India’s commitment to addressing climate change. 

“The announcement represents the first time India has articulated a national CO2 emissions target.  The target is based on analysis of the impact of various measures  the government of India has announced to constrain emissions, including the National Action Plan on Climate Change, a planned amendment to the Energy Conservation Code, new fuel efficiency standards that take effect in 2011, and new green building codes. 

“Coming on the heels of recent announcements of targets by the United States and China, India has today further signaled its willingness to cooperate with the international community on combating climate change. Taken together with the American and Chinese announcements, India’s announcement provides additional momentum for the negotiations by signaling three of the world’s largest emitters want to make Copenhagen a success.  Given the urgency of addressing climate change, we would like to see all three nations raise the level of their ambition in Copenhagen and aim for the higher end of their ranges.

“India’s announcement also signals that it understands it can reduce carbon intensity substantially, while continuing to grow its economy and provide an improved standard of living and a better environment for its citizens.”