New Delhi: Praising India’s efforts to make renewable energy an important part of the country’s overall energy mix, UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon on Tuesday asked India to take a leadership role to achieve a meaningful climate change pact at the UN’s December summit in Paris. The summit is expected to finalize a global climate agreement to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

“Climate change is a defining issue of our times. I count on the leadership of India in our ongoing efforts to address climate change issues... I expect that as one of the most critical member states of UN and as one of the fastest growing economies, India should be responsible to address climate change and we are able to have a universal and meaningful climate change agreement in Paris in December," Ban said.

The UN secretary general lauded India’s commitment to the issue under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and recounted his visit to a canal-top solar power plant in Gujarat for the Vibrant Gujarat summit.

“We need to use innovative technologies. The 100 smart city initiative is also something very important. I hope many countries in the world will emulate such leadership initiatives of India," he said.

Ban visited New Delhi’s Indira Paryavaran Bhawan, one of India’s most energy-efficient buildings under the environment ministry. He was briefed about the building’s rooftop solar panels and water conservation techniques. “In this building, we consume half of the water and electricity which we would have consumed in a normal building," environment minister Prakash Javadekar said.

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