Politics

COP26: Boris backs Indian PM Modi’s pledge to reach ‘ambitious’ climate targets by 2030

India: Expert says Modi should focus on 'defusing situation'

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Boris Johnson, 57, welcomed the proposals set out by Narendra Modi, 71, at the COP26 summit in Glasgow, the i paper reports. Mr Modi, who has served as India’s 14th Prime Minister since 2014, pledged to extract half the nation’s energy through renewables by 2030.

The news comes after Mr Johnson held important opening day talks with Mr Modi in Scotland’s largest city.

The Prime Minister has since said: “India has today announced ambitious plans for half its energy to come from renewables by 2030.

“This will cut carbon emissions by a billion tonnes, contributing to a worldwide decade of delivery on climate change.”

Mr Johnson added his counterpart in New Delhi “has for the first time made a commitment for India to become net zero, meaning 90 percent of the world’s economy is now committed to this goal”.

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Despite the Prime Minister’s welcoming words, Mr Modi has only promised to achieve net zero by 2070 – two decades after climate scientists believe the move is needed to limit temperature rises to 1.5C.

The Indian Prime Minister also implored richer countries to make $1trillion available in climate finance.

Reuters reports Brexit Britain has however offered to loan India $1billion (£730) to help the nation go green.

A source said: “The UK’s biggest finance offer to India at COP26 will be a $1billion sovereign guarantee for additional World Bank lending for green infrastructure.”

But the Express.co.uk has since revealed neither the Indian nor the UK Government have commented on the deal.

According to the Times, India’s CO2 emissions totalled around 2.6billion tonnes in 2019 – leaving India as the world’s third-biggest carbon emitter.

In comparison, the United Kingdom’s emissions stood at 370million tonnes – leaving Britain in a distant 17th place.

While Mr Johnson met with Mr Modi yesterday, he is also reported to have pressed leaders from Indonesia and Egypt.

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The Prime Minister used COP26’s opening day to deliver a keynote speech to world leaders and other delegates.

Mr Johnson said: “We are now coming centre stage before a vast and uncountable audience of posterity and we must not fluff our lines or miss our cue.

“Because if we fail, they will not forgive us – they will know that Glasgow was the historic turning point when history failed to turn.

“They will judge us with bitterness and with a resentment that eclipses any of the climate activists of today, and they will be right.”

The United Nations’ COP26 summit, which has seen 25,000 delegates descend on Glasgow, will be hosted in Scotland’s largest city until November 12.

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