GLASGOW: Underlining the importance of adaptation in fighting against the climate crisis in the most vulnerable countries across the globe, India and the UK on Tuesday jointly launched Infrastructure for Resilient Island States (IRIS) to help group of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) build climate resilient infrastructure in their respective countries.
“The IRIS will help SIDS in mobilizing finance and technology for developing quality infrastructure,” said Prime Minister Narendra Modi while speaking at its launch function.
He said India’s space agency ISRO would create a special ‘data window’ for SIDS which would help these countries get advance warnings of cyclones and monitor their coastlines and coral reefs.
The IRIS will be implemented by the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI) – an inter-governmental body which was launched at India’s initiative to mobilize finance and technology for building climate resilient infrastructure across the world. Australia is also a key partner of the IRIS.
“CDRI or IRIS is not just about infrastructure, but it is part of a very sensitive, collective responsibility for human welfare. It is, in a way, a shared atonement for our sins,” said Modi.
Besides the launch of ‘One Sun One Word One Grid’ (OSOWOG) and IRIS initiatives, the day three at COP26 witnessed many other collaborations on green innovation, landmark deforestation commitments and historic methane pledge on the agenda.
Though India is not part of the deforestation commitments due its linkages with trade, over 100 countries joined this initiative on forests by committing to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation by 2030. The pledge – called Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forest and Land Use – was backed by US$12 billion in public and $7.2 billion in private funding.
Canada, Russia, Brazil (which also updated its nationally determined contribution on Monday), China, Colombia, Indonesia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo endorsed the declaration on Tuesday.
“Together, they support 85% of the world’s forests, an area of over 13 million square miles which absorbs around one third of global CO2 released from burning fossil fuels each year,” said an official statement on the initiative.
For the first time in recent history, the COP on Tuesday hosted a major event on methane, with 105 countries, including 15 major emitters including Brazil, Nigeria and Canada, signing up to the “Global Methane Pledge”.
“This historic commitment, led by the US and EU alongside the UK COP26 presidency, equates to up to 40% of global methane emissions and 60% of global GDP,” said the UNFCCC in a statement.
Besides, more than 35 world leaders have also backed and signed up to the new “Glasgow Breakthrough Agenda” that will see countries and businesses work together to dramatically scale and speed up the development and deployment of clean technologies and drive down costs this decade.
Signatories include the US, India, EU, developing economies and some of those most vulnerable to climate change – collectively representing more than 50% of the world’s economy and every region.
The aim of the move is to make clean technologies the most affordable, accessible and attractive choice for all globally in the most polluting sectors by 2030, particularly supporting the developing world to access the innovation and tools needed for a just transition to net zero.


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