India's CO2 emissions drop by 1.4 pc for first time in four decades

By Gaurav Arora

New Delhi [India], May 13 (ANI): Economic slowdown, growth of renewable energy and the impact of COVID-19 lockdown have led to the first year-on-year reduction in India's CO2 emissions in four decades, says Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA).

Apart from COVID-19, impact and other measures such as drop in consumption of coal and oil has reduced the emissions by around 1.4 per cent in the fiscal year ending March 2020.

"Economic slowdown, growth in the renewable energy sector and the impact of COVID-19 have led to the first year-on-year reduction in India's CO2 emissions in four decades," Sunil Dahiya, an analyst at Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA) told ANI.

"COVID-19 is playing an important role in fall of CO2. Because of lockdown, all transport, industries, petroleum product consumption, less use of electricity, less use of coal-based electricity have led to a reduction in CO2," he added.

Dahiya said they had estimated last year that growth in CO2 emissions will fall "but because of coronavirus, CO2 growth not just dropped but went in negative".

"We can say that after lockdown CO2 emissions will rise," Dahiya said.

"In the last 2 months, we found that we can control air pollution and CO2 in India. Power sector should be provided a green recovery package with more use of renewable energy. Renewable energy is cheaper than coal. Old power plants need to be closed so that we can have a continuous reduction in CO2. We need to shift to electric transport," he added.

He also said that most of the industry and transport is closed and people can feel the fresh air and see blue sky. (ANI)