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India marches towards its green dream

COP26 Summit - Day Three
Indian prime minister Narendra Modi has set ambitious climate targets for the country.
Photo: Getty Images

India is chipping away at the many obstacles on its way to achieving carbon neutrality by 2070. The path is uphill, but will its efforts pay off?

Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, managing director at Indian power producer Apraava Energy, has seen the impact of climate change in India. He recalls how 30 years ago, the river Ganges, or Ganga, flowed alongside his school in the north state of Bihar.

“Now, the gorgeous river flows a kilometre away and looks very much like a narrow stream in the non-monsoon months,” he says.

Mishra’s company – one of India’s largest diversified power firms, previously known as CLP India – is seeing unprecedented changes too. Apraava is setting up wind farms near the Great Rann of Kutch, which has seen record rainfall. In the past, the Kutch, a large area of salt marshes in the Thar Desert between India and Pakistan, faced dry weather conditions for most of the year.

Now, the gorgeous river [Ganges] flows a kilometre away and looks very much like a narrow stream in the non-monsoon months
Rajiv Ranjan Mishra, Apraava Energy

India is extremely vulnerable to global warming, given its topography and socio-economic structure. In a report published in February, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the United Nations body which is responsible for advancing knowledge on human-induced climate change, said that India would face extreme scenarios, from rising sea levels to groundwater scarcity.


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