India and the United States have reiterated their commitment to swiftly implement the Paris Climate Change Agreement and to boost solar energy and other low carbon technologies.
During the second India-U.S. Strategic and Commercial Dialogue in New Delhi on 31 August, External Affairs Minister of India Sushma Swaraj and Minister of State for Commerce and Industry of India Nirmala Sitharaman co-chaired a dialogue with U.S. Secretary of State John F. Kerry and U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker.
Following the meeting, the two countries issued a joint statement. Here is an excerpt relating to climate change and energy:
“In light of the commitment by Prime Minister Modi and President Obama to strengthen and expand the highly successful U.S.-India Partnership to Advance Clean Energy Deployment (PACE-D), and underscoring the vital importance of expanding access to public and private financing for clean energy development in order to enhance energy access and sustainable development, the Sides welcomed the progress on clean energy initiatives announced during the recent Summit.
The Sides recognised their collective efforts to advance the U.S.-India Clean Energy Finance (USICEF) initiative, the U.S.-India Clean Energy Hub, the expansion of USAID programme for Utility-level support and the U.S.-India Catalytic Solar Finance Programme, which will collectively mobilize public and private capital towards clean energy solutions.
Recognising the advanced progress of the U.S.-India Clean Energy Finance Task Force (Task Force), the Sides announced their intent to expand the Task Force’s work to include new clean energy finance initiatives for joint collaboration.
Recognising the U.S.-India Joint Clean Energy R&D Centre initiatives for technological innovation in clean energy, the two sides appreciated the expansion of the Partnership to Advance Clean Energy Research (PACE-R) through a fourth track on smart grid and energy storage technologies. The Sides noted the progress under the “Greening the Grid” initiative and collaboration for training of Indian professionals in the area of large scale integration of renewable energy into the Indian grid. Both governments reiterated their commitment to doubling their Clean Energy R&D Investment towards fulfillment of the objectives of Mission Innovation, resolved to increased cooperation between national labs, and announced the creation of the PACE Fellowship.
The United States affirmed its support for pursuing its membership of the International Solar Alliance (ISA), recognising the critical role it can play in the development and deployment of solar power.
The Sides also recognised the continued significance of efficient power generation technologies to address the challenges of climate change.
The Sides reaffirmed their commitment to combat climate change and its effects. They reiterated their resolve to work together and with others to promote full implementation of the Paris Agreement to address the urgent threats posed by climate change.
India and the United States recognise the urgency of climate change and share the goal of enabling entry into force of the Paris Agreement as early as possible. The United States re-stated that it will join the Paris Agreement as soon as possible this year.
India has similarly begun its processes to work towards this shared objective. The Sides reiterated their commitment to pursue low greenhouse gas emission development strategies in the pre-2020 period and to develop long-term low greenhouse gas emission development strategies.
The United States also remains committed, with other developed countries, to the goal of jointly mobilising $100 billion per year by 2020 to address the needs of developing countries in the context of meaningful mitigation and adaptation action.”