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Low-carbon south Asia: India

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R. Mehta
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A key development challenge for India is addressing poverty and deprivation through inclusive sustainable development. One-third of the global poor, living on less than $1.25 a day, are in India – the highest in any country.

In 2009/10, the number of people living below the official Indian poverty line was 354.7 million – 29.8 per cent of India’s population.

Energy poverty is another dimension of the development challenge, especially when it comes to providing a decent living standard for the vast majority – 32.7% of Indian households do not have access to electricity. Furthermore, many of the households that do have access are often supplied electricity for a very short period of time and thus continue to rely upon kerosene for lighting their homes.

Where urban demand is a high energy demand, the report suggests solutions in four key areas:

Extending the existing Energy Conservation Building Code.
A greater emphasis on urban waste management and recycling, including power production from waste.
Strengthening the enforcement of automotive fuel economy standards and using pricing measures to encourage the purchase of efficient vehicles.
Incentives for the use of public transportation.

A review of case studies and emission reductions concludes the report, after a series of recommendations to support policy changes for a switch to low-carbon energy solutions.