India is not only meeting the Paris Agreement targets, but also exceeding them

Climate change must be fought not in silos but in an integrated, comprehensive and holistic way, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday.

Addressing the G-20 Summit side event 'Safeguarding the Planet: The Circular Carbon Economy Approach', he said India was not only meeting the Paris Agreement targets, but also exceeding them. "Inspired by our traditional ethos of living in harmony with the environment, and the commitment of my Government, India has adopted low-carbon and climate-resilient development practices," he pointed out.

Maintaining that the government was encouraging a circular economy, he pointed out that India was creating "next-generation infrastructure such as metro networks, water-ways and more. In addition to convenience and efficiency, they will also contribute to a cleaner environment".

India had taken concrete action in many areas like making LED lights popular which led to the reduction of 38 million tons of Carbon Dioxide emissions per year.

"Smoke free kitchens have been provided to over 80 million households through our Ujjwala Scheme. This is among the largest clean energy drives globally," PM Modi pointed out. He also referred to the efforts to eliminate single-use plastics.

Outlining the country's progress, he said the forest cover is expanding while the lion and tiger population was increasing. "We aim to restore 26 million hectares of degraded land by 2030," he told the gathering.

India would meet the goal of 175 Giga Watts of renewable energy well before the target of 2022. "Now, we are taking a big step ahead by seeking to achieve 450 Giga Watts by 2030," the Prime Minister said.

He explained the progress of the International Solar Alliance. It was "among the fastest growing international organisations, with 88 signatories," he said.

"With plans to mobilise billions of dollars, train thousands of stake-holders, and promote research and development in renewable energy, the ISA will contribute to reducing carbon foot-print," the Prime Minister noted.

He also gave the example for the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure, which had already been joined by 18 countries, including nine from among the G20, and four international organisations.

"This is the best time for further increasing research and innovation in new and sustainable technologies," he said.