'India's proposal on HFC will reduce emissions to 64% by 2050'
India's amendment proposal to the Montreal Protocol for curbing green house gas emissions will help reduce the level of hydrofluorocarbon, one of the key pollutant gases, up to 64% by 2050, a policy research think-tank Thursday said.
India had recently submitted its amendment proposal to Montreal Protocol, an international treaty designed to protect the ozone layer, for curbing hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) consumption and emissions.
"India has proposed that a phase down of HFCs could be negotiated under the Montreal Protocol. If the Indian amendment proposal is accepted, our analysis finds that 4.2 gigatonnes CO2 equivalent (Gt CO2eq) would be avoided between 2010 and 2050, or 64% of the total HFCs that will be emitted between 2010 and 2050.
"For the second half of this century, avoided HFC emissions would amount to almost 41 GtCO2eq. That is similar to total global CO2 emissions in 2014," said Arunabha Ghosh, CEO of Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW).
CEEW and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Thursday convened a roundtable in New Delhi to discuss this amendment proposal and the future roadmap.
A report on India's long-term hydrofluorocarbon emissions was also released at the roundtable meeting.
Noting that HFCs also have high global warming impact, Ghosh said the analysis finds that if unabated India's HFC emissions across sectors will reach 500 million tonnes CO2 equivalent in 2050.
This translates to a cumulative emission of 6.55 gigatonnes CO2 equivalent over the next 35 years, she said.
The Montreal Protocol is an international treaty designed to protect the ozone layer by phasing out the production of numerous substances that are responsible for ozone depletion.
HFCs were brought into replace the ozone-depleting substances but it was proved later that the ozone friendly gas has a potent warming effect.
Meanwhile, Susheel Kumar, Additional Secretary, Environment Ministry, said India with its amendment proposal hopes to change the "rules of the game" in the international climate negotiations.
"The proposal is our attempt to balance the need for HFC phase-down and the need for development of industries and the society. The proposal also gives a clear policy signal to the industries that HFCs would be phased down.
"We want India's final proposal to be built with consensus from all the stakeholders, including the industry and think-tanks. The proposal should be India's proposal and not just the government's. Further research and debate regarding IPR issues, finance and skilling of the service sector are also required," Kumar said.