Leader of the Global Climate Change Movement
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi made his intervention at the World Economic Forum’s Davos agenda. Speaking of the challenges the world is facing today, the Prime Minister stressed the importance of working on seeking solutions collectively. World Economic Forum commended Prime Minister Shri Modi’s effort to tackle global challenges like climate change. Appreciating Prime Minister Modi, WEF Executive Director Klaus Schwab said that India is at the forefront of thriving global action against climate change by leading global movements such as the International Solar Alliance. Shri Modi’s initiative of ‘panchamrit’ at national level to deal with the climate challenges also got appreciation from the World Economic Forum. At the COP26 meeting, he had announced the five key commitments as panchamrit (five nectars) to achieve net zero emissions by 2070. The five nectars include increasing the country’s non-fossil fuel based energy capacity to 500 GW by 2030, reducing total projected carbon emissions by one billion tonnes by 2030, reducing carbon intensity to less than 45% by 2030, becoming carbon neutral, and achieving net zero emissions by 2070.The twenty-first session of the Conference of the Parties (COP-21) on climate change was held in 2015 in Paris, France. In that session, India had made a commitment to achieve 40% of its installed electricity capacity from non-fossil energy sources by 2030. But under Shri Modi’s leadership and his pro-environment approach, the 40% target was achieved seven years before the set timing of 2030.
P-3 idea of PM Modi
At WEF, Prime Minister Modi urged that all countries should embrace sustainable lifestyles through the Vision of One Earth, One Health. Under the vision, during COVID-19, the Modi-led Indian government has saved many lives by providing essential medicines and vaccines to many countries.
The Prime Minister underlined that our lifestyle is also a major challenge for the climate. He said “throw away” culture and consumerism have made the climate challenge more serious. It is very important to rapidly shift today’s “take-make-use-dispose” economy towards a circular economy. The idea of LIFE (lifestyle for the environment) was given by PM Shri Modi at COP26. He said at WEF that it is important to transform Mission LIFE into a global mass movement. He said that a public participation campaign like LIFE could be made into a big base for P-3 “Pro Planet People.”
When the UN honours PM Modi
Earlier, Shri Modi had received the highest honour of the United Nations’ “Champions of the Earth Award”. This award was given to Shri Modi for his actions in bringing a positive impact on the environment. PM Modi got this award jointly with France’s President, Shri Emmanuel Macron, for their pioneering work in championing the International Solar Alliance (ISA) and promoting new areas of cooperation, including Macron’s work on the Global Pact for the Environment and Modi’s unprecedented pledge to eliminate all single-use plastic in India by 2022. The United Nations proclaimed that the initiative of ISA is Modi’s most ambitious move. ISA is an inter-governmental organisation promoting clean energy by tapping the benefits of solar power. The initiative taken by Modi during the COP21 meeting (United Climate Conference) has now 121 members. Most of the members are from sunny countries. He envisages achieving the vision of “One World, One Sun, One Grid’ through ISA. He hopes that in the future, ISA will play the same role that the oil cartel OPEC does today.
The “Champions of the Earth Award” also recognised Modi’s unprecedented and ambitious pledge to eliminate all single-use plastic from the country by 2022. However, the pledge was recognised in 2018 when the average per capita consumption of plastic in India was 11 kg, as against the global average of 28 kg.
From Green Crusader To Global Leader
From the beginning, he has been very sensitive to environmental problems. As a Chief Minister, he had taken several landmark initiatives to fight against climate change. He has penned a book titled “Convenient Action: Gujarat’s Response to the Challenges of Climate Change” on his policy experience to conserve the environment. At that time, after the publication of this book, Shri Modi’s name was registered as the second politician in the world, after former US Vice-President Al Gore, to author a book on climate change. The media termed him then a “green crusader”. His journey from a green crusader to a global leader in the fight against climate change has earned him numerous accolades from multilateral world forums for his tireless efforts to save the planet.