India is the third largest emitter of carbon in the world, though it ranks much lower in terms of per-capita emissions. The government of Narendra Modi has promised to reach carbon net zero by 2070 and has planned considerable investments into renewable energy. But the pledge is still 20 years after most of the rest of the world, and in the short term the country will continue to rely on coal for much of its power generation.
At the same time, India has rightly criticized the Global North for not taking responsibility for its historic share of carbon emissions and devoting the resources necessary for the Global South to make the transition to a clean energy future.
Is India dooming the planet, making a good faith effort to cut carbon emissions, or sticking up for the world’s poor?
Three experts analyze the economic and energy challenges facing India, the domestic movements for environmental justice, and the place the country occupies in the global effort against climate change.
* Jayati Ghosh, professor of economics, University of Massachusetts Amherst
* Ashish Kothari, co-founder, Kalpavriksh Environmental Action Group
* Basav Sen, Climate Justice Project director, Institute for Policy Studies