Mains Paper 3: Environment | Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment
From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:
Prelims level: UNFCCC Biennial Update Report
Mains level: India’s commitment towards climate change agreements
- The Cabinet has approved submission of India’s second Biennial Update Report (BUR) to the UNFCCC towards fulfillment of the reporting obligation under the convention.
Biennial Update Report (BUR)
- India had submitted its first BUR in 2016.
- As per the first report, the country had emitted 2,136.84 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent greenhouse gases in 2010.
- It said energy sector was the prime contributor to emissions and with 71 per cent of total emissions.
About the Report
- The submission of India’s second BUR would fulfil the obligation of India to furnish information regarding implementation of the convention, being a party.
- The BUR contains five major components:
- National Circumstances
- National Greenhouse Gas Inventory
- Mitigation Actions, Finance, Technology and Capacity Building Needs and Support Received and
- Domestic Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV)
- The BUR has been prepared based on a range of studies conducted at the national level.
2nd Biennial Update Report (BUR)
- This year, India emitted around 2.607 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent of GHGs in 2014, with the energy sector contributing over 70 per cent of the total.
- In 2014, a total of 26,07,488 Gigagram (Gg) CC-2 equivalent (around 2.607 billion tonnes of CC-2 equivalent) of GHGs were emitted from all activities (excluding LULUCF) in India.
- The net national GHG emissions after including LULUCF were 23,06,295 Gg COa equivalent at around 2.306 billion tonnes of CO2 equivalent.
*(LULUCF stands for Land use, land-use change, and forestry)
- Out of the total emissions, the energy sector accounted for 73 per cent, Industrial Processes and Product Use (IPPU) 8 per cent, agriculture 16 per cent and waste sector 3 per cent.
- About 12 per cent of emissions were offset by the carbon sink action of forest land, cropland and settlements.
India’s obligations to UNFCCC
- India is a Party to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
- The Convention, in accordance with its Article 4.1 and 12.1, enjoins upon all Parties, both developed country Parties and developing country Parties to furnish information, in the form of a National Communication regarding implementation of the Convention.
- The UNFCCC in COP-16 Cancun decided vide paragraph 60 (c) of decision 1 that developing countries, consistent with their capabilities and the level of support provided for reporting, should also submit biennial update reports .
- Decision 2 of COP17, in paragraph 41 (f) states that Biennial Update Reports shall be submitted every two years.