Read on to know more about the green credit programs, their impacts, and the challenges to achieving India’s net zero goal by 2070.
The Indian government is introducing Green Credits as part of their efforts to foster a widespread movement promoting environmentally positive actions and realizing the vision of “Mission LiFE.” These credits aim to support India’s net zero goal by 2070 by encouraging voluntary environmental initiatives undertaken by individuals, private sectors, small-scale industries, cooperatives, forestry enterprises, and farmer-produce organizations. The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) has recently released the draft implementation rules for the Green Credit Programme (GCP) in 2023.
The eight sectors which will be part of this credit system are —
- Tree Plantation
- Sustainable agriculture
- Waste management
- Air Pollution Reduction
- Mangrove conservation and restoration
- Sustainable Building and Infrastructure
In order to maintain the program’s effectiveness and reliability, the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE) has been designated as the administrator of the Green Credit Programme. The ICFRE will be responsible for creating guidelines, protocols, and operational procedures for the program’s execution. This includes defining specific thresholds and benchmarks for each Green Credit activity.
Additionally, the Green Credit Programme promotes participation from private sector industries, companies, and other entities by urging them to fulfill their existing obligations through actions that align with the generation or purchase of green credits.
Potential Impact of the Green Credit Program
The Green Credits Program has the potential to revolutionize India’s energy landscape and contribute significantly to global sustainability efforts. Promoting renewable energy sources and energy efficiency can help India achieve its target of 40% cumulative electric power capacity from non-fossil fuel-based energy resources by 2030. The program’s emphasis on green building standards can also lead to the development of environmentally-friendly infrastructure and promote sustainable urbanization.
While the Green Credit system appears promising in theory, experts have expressed concerns regarding the possibility of greenwashing within this market-based mechanism. Greenwashing refers to the practice of making false or exaggerated claims about environmental sustainability, aiming to create a positive image without making substantial environmental improvements. There is a valid apprehension that certain companies or entities may engage in superficial actions solely for the purpose of generating green credits, disregarding the necessity for genuine efforts to address environmental issues.
Furthermore, doubts have been raised regarding the effectiveness of these mechanisms in achieving immediate emissions reductions. Some question whether resources should be allocated towards monitoring and fraud prevention or directed towards more transformative government-led initiatives. These concerns highlight the need for careful evaluation and oversight to ensure the integrity of the Green Credit system and prevent potential misuse.
The Green Credit Programme plays a vital role in motivating individuals, companies, and local bodies to adopt sustainable practices and embrace a sustainable lifestyle. Although concerns about effectiveness and the potential for Greenwashing are present, the program’s diverse range of Green Credit Activities holds the potential to address various environmental challenges.
It’s essential to establish rigorous methodologies and standards and implement additional strategies that create substantial demand for green credits. This will ensure the stability and viability of the market. The Green Credit Programme signifies a noteworthy stride towards a greener future, fostering environmental consciousness and accountability.
With its cutting-edge platform, The Disposal Company is redefining the meaning of corporate responsibility in India, enabling brands to go plastic-neutral and carbon-neutral and contribute to a more sustainable future. Find out more here.