20 Apr 2015
The Unnat Chulha Abhiyan (National Biomass Cookstoves Programme) has set an ambitious target of deploying 2.75 million improved biomass cookstoves in the 12th Five-Year Plan Period, with a plan outlay of `294 crores.1 One of the financial provisions of the programme is to subsidize up to 50 per cent of the cost of the stove2, with an additional 10 per cent of the total cost paid to masons for construction of earthen stoves. Subsidies have an undeniable role in supporting the nascent improved biomass cookstoves market, with majority of the buyers having low paying capacities.
09 Apr 2015
Achieving Sustainable Energy for all (SE4ALL) is one of the fundamental needs for attaining development goals while ensuring economic growth and safeguarding the environment. Access to energy is a necessary precondition for achieving many development goals that extend far beyond the energy sector-eradicating poverty, increasing food production, providing clean water, improving public health, enhancing education, creating economic opportunity, and empowering women. Despite this, ground realities are starkly different in India. Around 600 million Indians do not have access to electricity and about 700 million Indians use biomass as their primary energy source for cooking.
07 Feb 2015
India happens to be the world's fourth largest energy consumer and a consumer of crude and petroleum products after the United States,China, and Japan. The net oil import dependency of India rose from 43 per cent in 1990 to 71 per cent in 2012 that resulted in a huge strain on the current account as well as the government exchequer. Transport sector accounts for the largest share (around 51 per cent) in terms of consumption of petroleum products in India. Nearly 70 per cent of diesel and 99.6 per cent petroleum are consumed by the transport sector and the demand is expected to grow at 6-8 per cent over the coming years in tandem with the rapidly expanding vehicle ownership.
22 Jan 2015
In many developing countries including India, energy pricing is a subject that involves political economy and engages the interests of different stakeholders. The governments in these countries often exert their discretions to regulate energy commodity prices and provide direct subsidies to realize certain social and economic objectives. This can bring distortion in the market and incur revenue losses without realizing much the desired outcome as can be seen in case of the power sector in India.
14 Jan 2015
The Paper highlights the governance and regulation issues that need to be addressed as part of the reform of the mineral concession system.Also it brings out the merits of bidding and first-in-time systems in their specific contexts. The difficulties of resource estimation and valuation in bidding systems are analysed. The paper underlines the need to ensure that the mineral concession system, on one hand, promotes scientific mining within a sustainable development framework, and on the other, incentivizes exploration and induction of advanced technologies for the purpose, and also ensures that the State gets a fair value for the minerals extracted.
20 Dec 2014
The Fifth Assessment Reports released by the IPCC indicates that increase in global temperatures is proportional to the build-up of long-lasting greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, especially carbon dioxide. Various models have estimated 680-1200 billion tonnes of CO2 as being the maximum volume of CO2 that could be emitted till 2100 into the atmosphere to still stay within the 2 °C limit. However, few countries have made efforts to move towards any major deviations from their past emission trajectories.
30 Oct 2014
India sustains nearly 17 per cent of the world's population but is endowed with just four per cent of global water resources. About 50 per cent of annual precipitation is received in just about 15 days in a year, which is not being brought to productive use due to limited storage capacity of 36 per cent of utilizable resources (252 BCM out of 690 BCM). Leakage and inefficiencies in the water supply system waste nearly 50 per cent of usable water. The ground water level is declining at the rate of 10 cm per year. Over 70 per cent of surface water and ground water resources are contaminated. All this is leading towards a water scarce situation in many parts of the country.
09 Oct 2014
Urban India has grown at an unprecedented rate in the last two decades. The level of urbanization increased from 25 per cent in 1991 to 31 per cent in 2011 with a total urban population of 377 million in 2011. A conservative estimate of India's population growth shows that it is expected to reach about 1.5 billion by 2031, of which the urban population is estimated to be about 600 million, i.e., about 40 per cent1. The contribution of urban areas to the national GDP is expected to increase from about 60 per cent in 2009-10 to about 75 per cent in 20302 indicating the continued trends in terms of cities being the engines for economic growth of the country.
14 Sep 2014
Around 160 million households in India rely on traditional biomass - firewood, cattle dung, and crop residues as cooking fuel. When biomass is burnt in traditional inefficient cookstoves it emits smoke that has significant health and climate impacts resulting in 10 lakh premature deaths per year. Efforts to replace inefficient traditional cookstoves with cleaner, more efficient improved biomass cookstoves have been in process across the country for several years now, primarily driven by grassroots institutions and government technical institutes. One of the biggest hurdles inhibiting the uptake of improved (biomass) cookstoves (hereafter referred to as ICs) is price.