In keeping with India’s decarbonization commitment, the Gujarat government inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on Monday to establish the country’s first carbon market.
The MoU was signed with the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago and the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) in the presence of Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel and officials from the department of climate change and department of mines and industries.
The government said in a statement that it believes new investments would flood into Gujarat and that the state will become a national model in the carbon trading market.
In 2019, J-PAL and the Energy Policy Institute launched the world’s first particulate matter trading market in Surat, Gujarat. The project was carried out in collaboration with the Gujarat Pollution Control Board (GPCB) and textile manufacturers in Surat.
According to an official statement issued by the state government on Monday, 350 highly polluting industries are taking advantage of Surat’s emission trading market. This pilot initiative has contributed to the air purification as the emissions of the industries have been reduced by 24%.
Following the success in Surat, GPCB plans to expand the project to Ahmedabad, Vapi, Vadodara, and Bharuch.
Last year at the COP26 summit, Indian prime minister Narenda Modi promised that India will reach net zero carbon emissions by 2070. To attain this goal, India has set five targets to reach 500 GW of non-fossil fuel energy capacity by 2030. This means that renewable energy will account for 50% of the power mix, reducing carbon emissions by nearly 1 billion tonnes to 3.48 billion tonnes.
India, on the road to decarbonization, added 13.5 GW of renewable energy capacity in fiscal year 2021-2022. Rajasthan and Gujarat were among the highest, adding 5,806 MW and Gujarat 2,469 MW, respectively, accounting for 61% of total capacity addition.