Himachal Pradesh aims to be India's 1st carbon-neutral state

February 13, 2012

The Indian state of Himachal Pradesh is undertaking a "carbon-smart” growth strategy in order to become carbon neutral by 2020 according to its chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal.

"The carbon footprint per capita in Himachal Pradesh has been assessed at 1.4 tonne in comparison to national average of 1.57 tonnes per capita," Dhumal was quoted by The Times of India while speaking at 12th Delhi Sustainable Development Summit.

He said the state government has signed an agreement with World Bank to harness carbon credits, which will generate INR20 crores (USD4 million) a year for 20 years, from numerous "Bio-Carbon Projects " across the state.

Government departments have been asked to carry out energy and environment audits and to adopt policies and measures for climate change mitigation and adaption.

Himachal Pradesh has also started a Community-Led Assessment, Awareness, Advocacy & Action Programme for environment protection and carbon neutrality at a local level under which initially 1,000 panchayats (local governments) will be covered out of total 3,000 panchayats in the hill state.