Deepening Climate Action at the State Level

To meet national targets for climate change mitigation, sub-national actors such as state governments and state-level stakeholders will need to play a crucial role in implementation.

India has announced a net zero emissions target of 2070, backed up by strong climate ambition in the near-term including increasing the share of renewable energy to 50 percent of the energy mix by 2030. Meeting these targets will require concerted action from all stakeholders, especially Indian state governments.

The federal structure of the country means that states have primary responsibility for governing several sectors that are pivotal to addressing climate change, including electricity supply, infrastructure and industries. Several Indian states are in the process of revising their State Action Plans on Climate Change (SAPCCs) in alignment with India’s Nationally Determined Contributions while also spearheading key climate mitigation and adaptation initiatives.Sub-national actions are critical to undertaking climate action due to their proximity to the consequences of climate change, which are most likely to be local (Oliveira 2009). They are in a better position to identify local needs, exert local influence, and mobilize local resources, which can help them both devise tailored solutions and identify complementarities in policies

The Challenges

Already, in India, there is growing momentum on state-level climate policies in areas such as renewable energy, energy efficiency and electric mobility. This is crucial, given the country’s climate vulnerabilities and growing carbon footprint. But there is much more that can be done to create an environment for climate action at the state level. Institutional capacity building, access to finance, policy innovation and stakeholder participation would serve to bolster states’ ambition to meet their potential.

There is a capacity gap within the states when it comes to understanding the nuances impact of climate change and the cross-sectoral efforts required to tackle it. Considering every subnational region has its own contextual features, different low-carbon growth pathways must be planned out for each state. Capacity building in states needs a greater focus in order to ensure that climate action is embedded within the development planning and implementation processes. Institutionalizing best practices like green budgeting, science-based approaches and carbon inventories can go a long way in accomplishing this goal.

Our Goals

Shakti engages with stakeholders at the state level to enable the development and implementation of climate resilient and low carbon development pathways. We seek to build capacity among state level stakeholders including the local CSO ecosystem to undertake take well-informed approaches to mitigation and adaptation initiatives. We focus on evidence-based solutions for better policies, technology development and adoption and mainstreaming climate finance interventions. We also work with ecosystem stakeholders across India to promote cross-state diffusion of the learnings and best practices.

Highlights of our Work