New Delhi [India], Oct. 2 : The United States this evening welcomed India's decision to join the Paris Climate Change agreement.
In a statement issued on Sunday, U.S. Ambassador Richard Verma welcomed India's decision as "a bold and decisive step in combating climate change".
"India's ratification provides indispensable political momentum to securing entry into force of the Paris Agreement this year, sending an enduring and irreversible market signal that low-carbon development is 21st century development, which will yield tremendous benefits not only for producers and consumers in India, but for those around the world," said the statement.
"We commend Prime Minister Modi for his leadership and thank all those who have worked on the Agreement over many years.
We look forward to continuing our close friendship with India and furthering our work together on climate change and clean energy, so that we may provide future generations a world to be proud of and treasure," it added.
Earlier, US President Barack Obama also hailed India's submission of its instrument of ratification to the United Nations in New York for the Paris Climate Change Agreement on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.
"Gandhiji believed in a world worthy of our children. In joining the Paris Agreement, @narendramodi (and) the Indian people carry on that legacy," tweeted Obama.
France also welcomed this move in a statement saying, "The President of the Republic welcomes the ratification of the Paris Agreement by India, on this symbolic day commemorating Mahatma Gandhi's birthday." So far 61 nations have ratified the landmark agreement on climate change accounting for a total of 47.79 per cent of the global greenhouse gas emissions.
India's ratification would take that figure to 51.89 per cent. The objective of the Paris Agreement is to reduce the emissions from 50 to 40 gigatons, or to 1.5 degrees Celsius above the pre-industrial levels.
Some developing countries have pledged to reduce carbon footprints in the form of Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs).
Adopted in Paris by the 195 Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) at a conference known as COP21, the agreement calls on countries to combat climate change and to intensify actions and investments needed for a sustainable low-carbon future, as well as to adapt to the increasing impacts of climate change.
The pact - which was signed in New York on April 22 by 175 countries at the largest, single-day signing ceremony in history - will enter into force 30 days after at least 55 countries, accounting for 55 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions, deposit their instruments of ratification.