December 17, 2021 4:36:10 am
The chair of investment firm Klein Perkins, John Doerr, is optimistic about India as the world’s largest rapidly growing democracy and the role it can play in the global conversation around climate change. Doerr was in conversation with Miles Kruppa, Venture Capital Correspondent, Financial Times.
Doerr spoke at length about his latest book Speed & Scale: An Action Plan for Solving Our Climate Crisis Now. “We are dumping 59 giga tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere… We need to cut those emissions by half by 2030. Carbon emissions need to decline by eight per cent each year, and we need to be net zero by 2050. We have never reduced carbon emissions in recent times. This will require commitments, actions country-by-country on a scale that is greater than what was needed to win World War 2,” said Doerr. “We have plenty of goals.. but goals are not plans,” he said.
There are five big countries who contribute majorly to the world’s greenhouse emissions. India is the third largest user of energy. “Its level of energy use and emissions are well below global standards. Seventy per cent of India’s emissions come from the use of coal, to generate electricity, but there is a grand programme wherein in 10 years the goal is to create 450 gigawatts of solar energy, and shift from 70 per cent of coal to just thirty per cent. PM Modi had declared this in the Paris summit six years ago,” shared Doerr, adding that India has huge potential in the climate crisis.
When questioned if India’s goal of achieving 450 gigawatts of renewable energy was attainable, Doerr replied in the affirmative. “It’s absolutely attainable. There is a combination of factors — strong state and national policy — local industries and manufacturers. Modi secured state of the art technology from other private sectors. India can absolutely rival China and become a leader in serving the needs of its own market and global markets,” said Doerr.
Doerr also highlighted the OKRs (objectives and key results) that need to be implemented by the Indian government. “OKRs identify an ambitious objective. In India 450 watts of renewable energy is an OKR. We need a comprehensible set of OKRs for India. Solar itself is not the solution… but we need microgrids. Half of India doesn’t have power, half of India doesn’t have cell phones, I don’t see it as a problem, I see it as an economic opportunity,” said Doerr.
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