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According to news I read yesterday, McKinsey’s yet-to-be-released report states India would lower its greenhouse gas intensity. In the study, McKinsey & Co. says India is already on its way to becoming one of the world’s least carbon-intensive countries—despite the country’s 7.5 percent economic growth rate. I had posted about this elsewhere as well.

I don’t see why India cannot be low-carbon. I mean, we use very little carbon compared to the developed countries. But let’s not kid ourselves. We are low-carbon out of necessity – when 80,000 villages do not have electricity (and thus even their basic needs are unmet), and our populations shows no signs of decrease, of course we will be a low carbon leader for a long time, if it is measured as CO2 released per capita.

Now, from what I have read of the McKinsey study (from the little info that’s available of the study), I think they are measuring CO2 released per $1000 of economic output. If that indeed is the case, then that’s a positive indeed, though it still depends on what yardstick the use for measuring economic output. If it is just the GDP, then of course, my initial sarcasm holds good – if most work done in India is labour-intensive owing to cheap labour, naturally CO2 output per unit of economic output will be low. If the yardstick is industrial output (without considering agriculture and small-scale industries etc), then a low-carbon economy does mean something positive. Let me wait until I read the report in full.