Key Announcements Made By FM Nirmala Sitharaman
‘The Union Budget 2023-24 adopts seven priorities that “complement each other and act as the ‘ Saptarishi’ guiding us through the Amrit Kaal”.
Green growth is one of the key priorities of the government.
While stating the vision and mission for ‘green growth’, the minister said, “Hon’ble Prime Minister has given a vision for “LiFE”, or Lifestyle for Environment, to spur a movement of environmentally conscious lifestyle. India is moving forward firmly for the ‘panchamrit’ and net-zero carbon emission by 2070 to usher in green industrial and economic transition.
This Budget builds on our focus on green growth.
12 Key announcements made by Nirmala Sitharaman for ‘ Green Growth’:
- Green Hydrogen Mission: The recently launched National Green Hydrogen Mission, with an outlay of Rs. 19,700 crores, will facilitate transition of the economy to low carbon intensity, reduce dependence on fossil fuel imports, and make the country assume technology and market leadership in this sunrise sector. Our target is to reach an annual production of 5 MMT by 2030.
- Energy Transition: This Budget provides Rs. 35,000 crore for priority capital investments towards energy transition and net zero objectives, and energy security by Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas.
- Energy Storage Projects: To steer the economy on the sustainable development path, Battery Energy Storage Systems with capacity of 4,000 MWH will be supported with Viability Gap Funding.
- A detailed framework for Pumped Storage Projects will also be formulated.
- Renewable Energy Evacuation: The Inter-state transmission system for evacuation and grid integration of 13 GW renewable energy from Ladakh will be constructed with investment of Rs. 20,700 crore including central support of Rs. 8,300 crore.
- Green Credit Programme: For encouraging behavioural change, a Green Credit Programme will be notified under the Environment (Protection) Act. This will incentivize environmentally sustainable and responsive actions by companies, individuals and local bodies, and help mobilize additional resources for such activities.
- PM-PRANAM: “PM Programme for Restoration, Awareness, Nourishment and Amelioration of Mother Earth” will be launched to incentivize States and Union Territories to promote alternative fertilizers and balanced use of chemical fertilizers.
- GOBARdhan scheme: 500 new ‘waste to wealth’ plants under GOBARdhan (Galvanizing Organic Bio-Agro Resources Dhan) scheme will be established for promoting circular economy.
- These will include 200 compressed biogas (CBG) plants, including 75 plants in urban areas, and 300 community or cluster-based plants at a total investment of Rs. 10,000 crore. In due course, a 5 per cent CBG mandate will be introduced for all organizations marketing natural and bio gas. For collection of bio-mass and distribution of bio-manure, appropriate fiscal support will be provided.
- Bhartiya Prakritik Kheti Bio-Input Resource Centres: Over the next 3 years, we will facilitate 1 crore farmers to adopt natural farming. For this, 10,000 Bio-Input Resource Centres will be set-up, creating a national-level distributed micro-fertilizer and pesticide manufacturing network.
- MISHTI: Building on India’s success in afforestation, ‘Mangrove Initiative for Shoreline Habitats & Tangible Incomes’, MISHTI, will be taken up for mangrove plantation along the coastline and on salt pan lands, wherever feasible, through convergence between MGNREGS, CAMPA Fund and other sources.
- Amrit Dharohar: Wetlands are vital ecosystems which sustain biological diversity. In his latest Mann Ki Baat, the Prime Minister said, “Now the total number of Ramsar sites in our country has increased to 75.
Whereas, before 2014, there were only 26…” Local communities have always been at the forefront of conservation efforts. The government will promote their unique conservation values through Amrit Dharohar, a scheme that will be implemented over the next three years to encourage optimal use of wetlands, and enhance bio-diversity, carbon stock, eco-tourism opportunities and income generation for local communities.
- Coastal Shipping: Coastal shipping will be promoted as the energy efficient and lower cost mode of transport, both for passengers and freight, through PPP mode with viability gap funding.
- Vehicle Replacement: Replacing old polluting vehicles is an important part of greening our economy. In furtherance of the vehicle scrapping policy mentioned in Budget 2021-22, I have allocated adequate funds to scrap old vehicles of the Central Government. States will also be supported in replacing old vehicles and ambulances.