Cost of India’s Carbon Targets

According to The World Bank, India will have to increase its capital expenditure by 14% if it has to reduce its carbon intensity by 30% by 2020, as promised before the Copenhagen Summit. The country will also have to replace 130GW of coal-based power generation with clean technologies by 2025.

India has said that it would reduce its intensity of emissions per unit of production by 20-25% by 2020, and by 37% by 2030. Though carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, responsible for increasing the average global temperature, will continue to rise in India because of its need for more power, the intensity of emissions per unit of production has been on the decline since the early 1990s. 

India’s CO2 emissions will increase from 1.1 billion tonnes in 2007 to 4.5 billion tonnes in 2031 if it adheres to plans such as the Integrated Energy Policy, but this can be reduced to 3.7 billion tonnes in 2031 if the country invests heavily in clean technology, capacity and institutional development. As per estimates based on the two scenarios, India could reduce its CO2 intensity by 19-30% by 2020 and 30-45% by 2031, depending on its efforts.

The World Bank’s strategy for future support includes increasing hydropower capacity by around 1,500MW, supporting the national solar mission, promoting concentrated solar power by helping remove regulatory and investment barriers, and supporting renewable energy to scale up to 10% of total generation by 2012.

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