Zero Hour | Budget Session ’22
I addressed the Lok Sabha on the need for a new climate law in India during Zero Hour on February 8, 2022.
At COP26 in Glasgow, India set ambitious targets for attaining net zero by 2070, reducing carbon intensity and carbon emissions by 2030 and increasing non-fossil fuel energy capacity by 2030. To fulfil the commitments made at Glasgow, India needs to come up with a climate legislation that is enabling, comprehensive and adaptive.
India’s climate law should be one that is applicable for both States and the private sector. Driving forward India’s climate legislation should be a competent, nation-wide institution backed with necessary statutory provisions. This institution should be modelled along the lines of constitutional bodies like the Comptroller and Auditor General or the Chief Election Commissioner.
The new climate law should require the Government to review existing climate change action plans to address the many dimensions of climate change mitigation. It should set a series of interim targets and enforce procedural duties for multiple stakeholders. Periodic reviews and mechanisms for reporting to the Parliament should be put in place. This should be supplemented by making all reports open to public feedback.
India’s climate law should be founded on the social consensus of workers, trade unions, communities, NGOs, industry, and all other stakeholders. At a time when the global economy is fast transforming to accommodate climate change, the law should ensure Governmental support to small and medium companies.
I urged the Government to take speedy and diligent action in this direction.