India’s energy investment particulars show the country is committed to climate change mitigation
The 4th World Energy Investment (WEI) report published by International Energy Agency (IEA) highlights that investment in India’s energy sector has grown the most in the last three years.
The USA accounted for the most growth in the energy supply investment this decade with India being the second in the decade. However, in the last three years India has invested the most as compared to China or the USA. The report states that India’s investment in the energy sector grew at a record of 12% (2015-18), to around $85 billion. Globally, spending on non-renewable resources has increased resulting in a counter-balance to the investments made in the renewable sources. This has led to an imbalance between the current trends on one hand and the sustainable development goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement on the other.
Where India deserves rich praise is in the way it has boosted investment in the renewable energy sector—in the last three years, the country’s investment in renewable sources have surpassed investments in fossil fuels. The credit goes to the government policies supporting solar PVs and wind energy. Grid investments have increased by 4% even as the investment in coal supply grew by 5% in 2018. In the other sectors, it is reported that electronic vehicle charging stations growth has been 60% to over $3 billion, and digital grid technologies by 10% to over $35 billion. New vehicle standards in India (2018) will push up efficiency-related spending. In Asia-Pacific, India is emerging as a preferred destination for investment in industrial energy efficiency, backed by modernisation of industrial facilities and government policy such as the Perform, Achieve, Trade (PAT) Scheme. The report showcases India’s commitment to the Paris Agreement COP-21 and energy security, wherein in its Intended Nationally Determined Contributions the first two commitments included; reduction of emissions of its GDP by 33-35% by 2030, and to achieve 40% cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel based energy source by 2030. But, India, or a handful of other nations that seem committed to a below 2oC warming future, alone can’t take on the heat of climate change mitigation.