IISc study says India needs to ramp up research efforts to operationalize the Paris agreement

Data source: NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS). 

Bangalore, 21 September: A recent Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore, study published in Current Science magazine says India needs to ramp up its research efforts to implement the Paris agreement. The study published in May, 2017 said India would require transformative technologies and policies to stabilize warming in the range 1.5 to two degrees celsius.

The findings of the study led by a team of three researchers N. H. Ravindranath, Rajiv Kumar Chaturvedi, Poornima Kumar titled “Paris Agreement; research, monitoring and reporting requirements for India" at IISc say operationalizing the Paris agreement requires India to look at research requirements for greenhouse gas mitigation strategies and policies, adaptation strategies, and, data reporting.

The Paris agreement requires countries to peak their emissions as soon as possible followed by a rapid reduction. The study says India needs to urgently figure out when and how to do it, and explore the technological options to do so. But, the findings say India does not have a long-term greenhouse gas inventory management system. Rajiv Kumar, one of the researchers on this study, said, “The government has all the necessary resources to set up one. It just needs to gather enough will to actually do it.”

The study says India’s economy is tied to crucial sectors such as agriculture, water resources, natural ecosystems and forestry, among others. Therefore, setting up long-term research efforts will be crucial for meeting the adaptation-related requirements of the agreement. But, India is yet to assess the vulnerability of various sectors to adapt to a low-carbon mode.

The agreement expects an environment of transparency over progress made to help build trust among the countries party to the agreement. In order to achieve this India needs to create an archive of data, maps, and greenhouse gas inventory info, among other things. India will also need to ensure different sectors maintain systematic records of their greenhouse gas emissions and the mitigation activities. But, the study says, India is yet to set up a well-established data collection system to be able to do this.

The Paris agreement says global temperatures have already risen by one degrees Celsius from pre-industrial times. A rise of 1.5 - two degrees Celsius will adversely affect food-production systems and ecosystems around the world. And, the study says current rate of greenhouse gas emissions will likely increase global temperatures by 4.8 per cent.

In a meeting between UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and select leaders on Climate Change in New York on Tuesday, Indian external affairs minister, Sushma Swaraj, said, “India will continue to work above and beyond the Paris agreement.”

 

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