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India forming climate change finance unit

06 October 2011
India forming climate change finance unit

NEW DELHI: The Indian Government will establish a climate change finance unit under the guidance of Dr Kaushik Basu, Chief Economic Advisor for India’s Finance Ministry, to better integrate climate change into development frameworks and financial systems. 

Dr Kaushik Basu made the announcement at the US-India Business Council (USIBC)-FICCI Round Table meeting, which was attended by about 20 CEOs of US companies and 20 participants from India, among them, USIBC Chairman Terry Mcgraw and FICCI President Harsh Mariwala.

India is already voluntarily committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions, so the climate change finance unit will offer a greater level of support for increased sustainable development and mitigation plans.

The Finance Minister said that the unit will be set up to propel analytical thinking around climate change and low carbon economic opportunities, discussion of which is gaining momentum since India’s deeper involvement in the international negotiations on climate change with the proposed National Action Plan on Climate Change.

Speaking at the Round Table meeting, Dr Basu said: “For India, sustainable development is a necessity. Long-term perspective plan on energy and the ambitious National Action Plan on Climate Change seek to increase the share of clean and renewable energy in the energy mix and increase energy efficiency across the economy, promote development objectives while also yielding mutual benefits for addressing climate change effectively.”

Calling for state and local governments to collaborate on climate action, Dr Basu elaborated that India needed changes in micro-economic incentives so that the country could accelerate its Clean Revolution, and assured that there would be more exposure of climate change issues in 2012’s Economic Survey, which this year premiered a dedicated chapter on the subject.

Excited about the move, Aditi Dass, Director of Technology Programs, The Climate Group India said: “For a country as vulnerable as India, the issue of climate finance is extremely critical and decisive in transforming initiatives of low carbon growth into a reality. A government initiative in this direction will not just boost different players and stakeholders but also make a global statement for commitment towards climate care.” 

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