COP28: Positive developments on Loss and Damage Fund, Green Credit Initiative. What lies ahead



Last night I reached Dubai, UAE to rejoin the ongoing negotiations at 28th Conference of Parties (COP28). I had been in Dubai from November 30 to December 2 earlier when Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi joined the World Climate Action Summit, the High-Level Segment of COP28.

COP28 comes at a decisive moment for global climate action. Temperature records are being broken and climate impacts are being increasingly witnessed in wildfires, floods, storms and droughts across the world. The United Nation’s Global Stocktake Synthesis Report shows urgent steps must be taken to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement.

Against this background, COP28 assumes significance as a critical opportunity to put the world on a more sustainable path.

India has already undertaken very significant and positive steps at COP28 towards that end. On December 1, PM Modi together with President Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan of UAE, co-hosted the High-Level event on ‘Green Credits Programme’. Even as the event witnessed the participation of H.E. Mr. Ulf Kristersson, Prime Minister of Sweden, H.E. Mr. Filipe Nyusi, President of Mozambique and H.E. Mr. Charles Michel, President of the European Council, PM Modi invited all nations to join this Initiative.

The Green Credit Initiative is driven by PM Modi’s philosophy of making environmental conservation a Jan Bhagidari Movement. During the G20 Summit presided over by India, PM Modi had mentioned, “I feel this is the time to talk about green credit, India is working in this direction by developing Green Credit Framework through which we can initiate climate positive actions.”

The initiative has thus been conceptualised as a mechanism to incentivise voluntary pro-planet actions. This initiative envisages green credits for those undertaking plantation activities on watershed areas, wasteland, and degraded forest land. Its objective is the creation of a land bank, on which voluntary plantations can be undertaken. The land inventory will be available to communities, corporates, industries and philanthropies for carrying out plantation activities. Digital processes will be used under the programme for registration, verification, evaluation and issuance of green credits.

India believes climate crisis is a global problem and thus its solutions must be based on the principle of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam – One Earth. One Family. One Future. The Green Credit Initiative therefore aims to facilitate global collaboration and cooperation through exchange of knowledge, experiences and best practices in planning, implementation and monitoring of environment positive actions through mechanisms like Green Credits. The initiative incentivises pro-planet action.

There are a lot of questions around how this initiative will be rolled out and the shape and form it will be given. It suffices to say that the step is in its nascent stage and will take a concrete shape as time progresses.

To begin with, the event on December 1 saw the launch of a web platform which would be a repository of best practices and policies that incentivise environmentally friendly actions. The portal will work towards shaping green credit policy instruments and supporting implementation and monitoring of the plan.

On its part, India notified the Green Credit Rules on October 12, 2023 under the Environment Protection Act, 1986, as a mechanism to encourage voluntary plantation activity across the country, resulting in award of Green Credits and to build an inventory of land which can be utilised for afforestation programmes.

India is optimistic that going ahead, PM Modi-initiate Green Credit Programme will go a long way in encouraging environmentally conscious behaviour as incentivising behavioural change is known to create long-term positive impact.

Another significant development that was part PM Modi’s participation in COP28 was India offering to host COP33 in 2028. Given the success of G20, the world looks at India to show the way on driving negotiations towards result-oriented positive direction.


A positive development during COP28 was an agreement on the operationalisation of the Loss and Damage Fund. In fact, COP28 began with the landmark adoption of an agreement on a new Loss and Damage Fund. India strongly supports the decision as a way to help countries cope with the vagaries of climate change. The decision offers a step towards ensuring no one if left behind as the world fights increasing natural disasters as a result of changing weather patterns, floods, wildfires and other natural disasters.

During his visit to the UAE, PM Modi in his speech on ‘Transforming Climate Finance’ said that the role of all the countries of the Global South, including India, has been very less in climate change, but its impact is much greater on them. Despite lack of resources, these countries are committed to climate action.

Climate finance and technology are essential to meet the aspirations of the Global South. The countries of the Global South expect the developed countries to help them as much as possible to combat climate change. PM Modi called this “both natural and justified”.

Welcoming the decision on Loss and Damage Fund, PM Modi said that the development has brought new hope to the COP 28 summit. He further expressed hope that the COP summit will also yield concrete results on other topics related to climate finance - First, COP-28 will see real progress on the New Collective Quantified Goal on Climate Finance. Second, there will be no reduction in Green Climate Fund and Adaptation Fund, this fund will be replenished immediately. Third, Multilateral Development Banks will provide affordable finance for development as well as climate action. And four, developed countries will definitely eliminate their carbon footprint before 2050.


As the negotiations proceed, India will continue to press for climate action, climate justice and climate finance at COP28 and I will be representing India at the forum over the next six days and putting forth the nation’s stand at the High-Level Ministerial Dialogue on Climate Finance regarding information to be provided by Parties in accordance with Article 9, paragraph 5, of the Paris Agreement. Ministerial Summit of LEAD IT to be joined by Ministers.

I will also be presenting the National Statement where the vision and achievements of India will be mentioned. There will also be events around LEAD-IT, the Mangrove Alliance for Climate and many programmes focused on a sustainable world.

I look forward to an action-packed schedule ahead that is productive and meaningful in driving positive change and putting forth India’s stand on the global stage as a voice of the global south.