India and Canada have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to increase cooperation on climate action, environmental protection and conservation through a range of initiatives in areas such as renewable energy and plastic pollution.
The MoU was signed by environment minister Bhupender Yadav and his Canadian counterpart Steven Guilbeault in Stockholm on Thursday. The two countries will collaborate, exchange information and expertise, and support each other's climate and environmental goals through effective, long-term solutions that also advance economic growth and create jobs.
The two sides will support initiatives in a wide range of areas, including increasing renewable energy capacity, decarbonising heavy industries, reducing plastic pollution, supporting the sound management of chemicals, and ensuring sustainable consumption.
Canada has several proven clean technologies that could be of interest to India, such as water and waste management systems, clean hydrogen, smart grids and energy storage, said a statement from the Canadian high commission.
The MoU was signed on the margins of the Stockholm+50 meeting and was a follow-up to an earlier meeting between the two ministers at COP26 last year.
The agreement builds on existing cooperation between the two countries, such as their work as members of the High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People, which has urged world leaders to adopt a post-2020 global biodiversity framework to conserve 30% of the world's marine and terrestrial areas by 2030.
"This agreement is a significant milestone for Indo-Canadian relations on some of the most pressing global issues of our time. We are launching a collaborative process between our two governments that will strengthen each of our responses to the challenges we face in dealing with climate action and nature protection," Guilbeault said.
Canada has been tackling plastic waste and pollution by proposing bans on harmful single-use plastics, investing in innovative solutions, and helping build a circular economy. "Working more closely with India will help our collective interest to move toward a zero-plastic waste future," the Canadian statement said.
India is perceived by Canada as a key partner for addressing climate change and environmental issues. By 2030, India will be the world's third largest economy and it is currently the world's third largest emitter of greenhouse gases, after China and the US.
The country recently increased its goal of reducing the emissions intensity of its GDP from 35% to 45% and is now aiming to generate half of its electricity from renewables by 2030, up from 40%.