India emerging as a Global Climate Warrior! How PM Modi’s policies changed India from norm-follower to norm-maker!

“India takes a bold step for the planet by banning single-use plastics

This is what real leadership looks like.”

These words are not of a Modi Bhakth, Tod Perry of The Planet commented so, on PM Modi’s initiative on single use plastic ban in India.

The mass production of plastic began in the 1950’s and just about every piece of it is still here. It’s either still in use, sitting in a landfill or floating in the ocean.

Over 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic has been produced over the past 70 years and 8 million tons are dumped in the ocean annually.

If those numbers aren’t scary enough, the amount of plastic in the world’s oceans is expected increase by a factor of ten in the next decade.

India is taking bold steps to reduce its plastic pollution by banning six different types of single-use plastics: plastic bags, cups, plates, small bottles, straws, and certain types of sachets.

The ban is expected to reduce the country’s annual plastic consumption by about 5%.

PM Modi while delivering opening remarks at the 14th session of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, urged the other world leaders to say good bye to single use plastics.

He said time has come to put an end to the plastic menace.

World has started to look up to India as a leader in combating climate change. PM Modi changed the stature of India from a norm- follower to a norm-maker.

The Indian government is not just making policies but actually exhibiting its commitment to fight climate change.

In 2015 , India pledged to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide it produces by 35% and to generate 40% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030.

While India’s bold new goals seemed tough to be achieved in such short time, it is already ahead of schedule.

India’s efforts have been officially acknowledged by the United Nations Environment, all related stakeholders and agencies.

To contrast India’s leadership with the United States, the current president Donald Trump had blamed China for creating the hoax of climate change in order to make US non competitive.

How India achieved this feat?

India took a decisive decision of procuring clean and green energy.

At present, India has an installed power-generation capacity of 357,875 megawatts (MW), of which around 22% or 80,000 MW is generated through clean energy projects such as solar and wind. With addition of large hydro projects to clean energy segment, India is poised to have 225 GW of renewable energy by 2022.

Wind power capacity is 36,625 MW, making India the fourth-largest wind power producer in the world.

Four of the top seven largest solar parks worldwide are in India including the second largest solar park in the world at Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, with a capacity of 1000 MW.

The world’s largest solar power plant – Bhadla Solar Park – is being constructed in Rajasthan with a capacity of 2,255 MW and is expected to be completed shortly.

India recently gifted solar panels to UN headquarters in New York to promote sustainable energy.

The whole world is now looking upto India’s leadership to combat climate change and plastic menace. Leadership is not just winning seats with majority and to make policies for one’s country. But a true leadership is that which not only takes a country in a path if development but also influence the whole world by effective implementation of its policies.

PM Modi has done it. Now it’s on the citizens of India to take responsibility to Co operate with the government to leave behind a greener and cleaner world for the next generation.

Dr.Sindhu Prashanth