Model Question and Answers for APSC | “Access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy is the sine qua non to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).” Comment on the progress made in India in this regard.
Ans : Energy is the dominant contributor to climate change, accounting for around 60% of total global greenhouse gas emissions. Also, energy is a crucial resource to undertake developmental activities and advance living standards. However, if it is not affordable, reliable, sustainable and accessible, the goal of sustainable development will be hard to achieve. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) validates the same, wherein SDG-7 commits affordable and clean energy for all.
Progress made in India:
1.Various schemes like PAHAL (Pratyaksh Hanstrantit Labh), Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana; Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga have improved the access and provided better sources of energy to the people, thereby relieving them from the unsustainable and harmful use of firewood and kerosene.
2. By the Green Grid initiative and International Solar Alliance, India is adopting and promoting better technology that is less polluting, more efficient and supports the agenda of sustainable development.
3. For example, a scheme for subsidies for solar panels, lamps, irrigation pumps, biogas plants etc. is encouraging sustainable and modern energy resources in various parts (especially rural areas and remote locations) of our country.
4. India has also launched a Hydrogen mission and e-Vehicle plan for further innovation in affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy.
5. Taxes on fossil fuels are high in India to discourage their use and to promote renewable sources
Achieving Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG 7) – ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all – with its targets on universal access, energy efficiency and renewable energy, will open a new world of opportunity for billions of people. It will lay the foundation for the eradication of poverty, for climate action and for a sustainable world. Simply put, without progress on SDG 7, it will be impossible to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on climate change.