Green Credit Scheme
The Environment Ministry has released a draught notification outlining a proposed “Green Credit Scheme” that would reward a variety of actions, such as afforestation programmes, water conservation, waste management, and the reduction of air pollution, by allowing people and organisations to produce “Green Credits.” These credits can also be exchanged for cash using an unspecified procedure.
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It is suggested that a National Green Credit Program be established to utilise a competitive market-based approach for Green Credits and encourage voluntary environmental measures among diverse stakeholders.
In addition to encouraging personal or social behaviour. The Green Credit Program will encourage private sector businesses and industries as well as other organisations to fulfil their current legal duties by engaging in acts that can be related to creating or acquiring Green Credits.
The announcement identifies eight industries, or activities, that may be eligible for earning credits:
- Water-based Green Credit to promote water conservation, water harvesting, water use efficiency/savings, including treatment and reuse of wastewater;
- Sustainable agriculture-based Green Credit to promote natural and regenerative agricultural practises and land restoration to improve productivity, soil health, and nutrient content;
- Tree plantation-based Green Credit to promote activities for increasing green cover across the country through tree plantations and related activities;
- Water-based Green Credit to promote water conservation, water harvesting, and water use efficiency/savings;
- Waste management, which includes collection, sorting, and treatment;
- A Green Credit based on air pollution reduction to support actions to lower air pollution and other pollution-abatement operations; a Green Credit based on mangrove conservation and restoration to encourage conservation and restoration efforts for mangroves;
- Sustainable building and infrastructure-based Green Credit to promote the creation of structures and other infrastructure using sustainable technologies and materials.
- Ecomark based Green Credit to encourage manufacturers to gain ecomark label for their products and services.
The notification also mentions a mechanism that will calculate how many units of water conservation or land restoration will equal one Green Credit. The specifics of implementing the programme will be determined by a “steering committee” made up of representatives from the public and private sectors, and the Indian Council for Forestry Research and Education will be in charge of general administration of the initiative.
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