India is unlikely to bind itself to a net-zero greenhouse gas emissions goal by 2050, government sources told Reuters, despite diplomatic pressure from the United States and Britain to do so to help slow global warming.
India is the world’s third-biggest carbon emitter after China and the United States and thus is vital in the fight against climate change currently focused on reaching zero emissions by mid century or thereabouts.
China has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2060 while U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration is expected to announce a 2030 target for reducing emissions at a summit next month, and later possibly set a target date for becoming carbon neutral.
But India’s energy demand is projected to grow by more than any other nation over the next two decades and the worry is that it may have to cut back on consumption if it were to tie itself to a hard emissions deadline, two sources involved in the discussions told Reuters.
“We may not be able to commit ourselves to net zero emissions, it is a delicate problem,” said one of the sources, who did not wish to be identified.