COP27: What is India’s Agenda at COP27 Summit?

Indian minister Bhupender Yada will attend the 27th Conference of Parties (COP) to UNFCCC on Sunday, where it will seek clarity on the definition of climate finance and push developed countries to increase the supply of technology and finance needed to address climate change and disasters that result from it, Bhupender Yadav, the Union Environment Minister, will represent the Indian delegation at the conference scheduled for November 6-8 in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt. UNFCCC Parties meet once a year to discuss how to address climate change jointly.

The conference is expected to attract more than 100 heads of state, including US President Joe Biden, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, and the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi.

As it is said, “what gets measured gets done,” and India looks forward to substantial progress on climate finance discussions and clarity on its definition, according to the Union Environment Ministry. For developing countries to accurately assess climate finance, “For developing countries to accurately assess the amount of climate finance flowing to them, more clarification is needed on the definition of climate finance,” it said. Without a definition, developed countries are able to pass off loans as climate-related aid by greenwashing their finances.

“India will seek clarification as to what constitutes climate finance, whether it is grants, loans, or subsidies,” Yadav said.

The developed countries committed to mobilize USD 100 billion annually by 2020 to help developing countries combat climate change at COP15 in Copenhagen in 2009. However, they failed miserably to do so.

India will exert pressure on rich nations to perform on this promise in concert with other developing countries.

Globally, the public financial support reported by developed countries in October 2020 reached USD 45.4 billion in 2017 and USD 51.8 billion in 2018. This is according to the Fourth Biennial Assessment of the UNFCCC’s Standing Committee on Finance.

The developing world, including India, will also push wealthy countries to agree to a new global climate finance target, also referred to as NCQG (new collective quantified goal on climate finance), which should be in the trillions as the costs of addressing and adapting to climate change have increased.

A consensus on the scale of financial mobilization could be welcomed at COP27, said RR Rashmi, Distinguished Fellow at TERI, and former UNFCCC climate negotiator. A figure of USD 100 billion for developing countries was agreed upon long before the Paris Agreement was signed. Rashmi said that the total cumulative financing requirements of developing countries are estimated to be between USD 5.8 and USD 5.9 trillion between now and 2030, according to Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs).

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