April 22, 2021
Your Excellency President Biden,
My fellow Citizens of this Planet,
I would like to thank President Biden for taking this initiative.Humanity is battling a global pandemic right now.And, this event is a timely reminder that the grave threat of Climate Change has not disappeared.
In fact, Climate Change is a lived reality for millions around the world.Their lives and livelihoods are already facing its adverse consequences.
For humanity to combat Climate Change, concrete action is needed.We need such action at a high speed, on a large scale, and with a global scope.We, in India, are doing our part.Our ambitious renewable energy target of 450 Gigawatts by 2030 shows our commitment.
Despite our development challenges, we have taken many bold steps on clean energy, energy efficiency, afforestation and bio-diversity.That is why we are among the few countries whose NDCs are 2-degree-Celsius compatible.
We have also encouraged global initiatives like International Solar Alliance, LeadIT, and the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure.
As a climate-responsible developing country, India welcomes partners to create templates of sustainable development in India.These can also help other developing countries, who need affordable access to green finance and clean technologies.
That is why, President Biden and I are launching the "India-US climate and clean energy Agenda 2030 partnership”. Together, we will help mobilise investments, demonstrate clean technologies, and enable green collaborations.
Today, as we discuss global climate action, I want to leave one thought with you.India’s per capita carbon footprint is 60% lower than the global average.It is because our lifestyle is still rooted in sustainable traditional practices.
So today, I want to emphasise the importance of lifestyle change in climate action.Sustainable lifestyles and a guiding philosophy of "Back to Basics” must be an important pillar of our economic strategy for the post-Covid era.
I recall the words of the great Indian monk Swami Vivekananda.He called on us to "Arise, awake and stop not until the goal is reached”.Let us make this a Decade of Action against climate change.
Thank you. Thank you very much.