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1. At Net-zero state, a country’s emissions are compensated by absorption and removal of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere.

2. It does not mean that a country would bring down its emissions to zero.

3. Absorption of the emissions can be increased by creating more carbon sinks such as forests.

4. On the other hand removal of gases from the atmosphere requires futuristic technologies such as carbon capture and storage.

5. As the absorption and removal exceed the actual emissions, countries can have negative emissions.

6. Bhutan has a carbon-negative economy.

How is Net-Zero getting traction?

1. Active campaign to make to get every country to sign on to a net-zero goal for 2050 is going on.

2. Global carbon neutrality by 2050 is regarded as the only way to achieve the Paris Agreement target.

3. Current policies and actions are inadequate to prevent a 3–4°C rise by the end of the century.

4. The USA is taking leadership to make Net-zero the new climate action.

Why is the climate goal changing?

1. The climate goal is changing from carbon reduction that focussed on emission-reduction targets for the developed countries to carbon neutrality.

2. The net-zero formulation does not assign any emission reduction targets on any country.

3. But a country can become carbon-neutral at its current level of emissions, or even by increasing its emissions, if it is able to absorb or remove more.

4. It is a relief for the developed countries as now the burden is shared by everyone.

Where does India stand on this?

1. India is the only one opposing this target as it is set for a high growth trajectory that is bound to release enormous carbon.

2. No amount of afforestation or reforestation would be able to compensate for the increased emissions.

3. Also, carbon removal technologies are either unreliable or very expensive.

4. So, India demands countries to fulfill the commitment made in Paris before opening up a parallel discussion on net-zero.

5. India is more likely to achieve the emission reduction targets of Paris agreement.

6.  India is the only G-20 country with climate actions compliant to the Paris Agreement goal.

Which accusations were made on developed countries?

1. India accuses developed countries on various grounds.

2. Developed nations have never delivered on their past promises and commitments.

3. No major country achieved the emission-cut targets assigned to them under the Kyoto Protocol.

4. Some countries also walked out of the Kyoto Protocol, without any consequences.

5. Their track record on commitment to provide money, and technology, to developing and poor countries is poor.

What does India want?

1. India does not rule out the possibility of achieving carbon-neutrality by 2050 or 2060.

2. But India does not want to make an international commitment so much in advance.

3. It demands developed countries to take more ambitious climate actions now, to compensate for the unfulfilled earlier promises.

Source : Indian Express