Domestic resources utilization in India for a short term goal
Drought hit parts of Maharashtra, floods in south and west Odisha, Uttarakhand floods, cyclone Phailin and Kashmir floods. These were the catastrophic events that have occurred in recent past in India. The nexus of climate change (water, energy and food crisis) have behemoth India, especially in last decade. And the least contributors to climate change – local communities are affected most by these disasters.
Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar has stipulated that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi will stick to the long-term approach; that is, the country will not commit to a year when its GHG (Greenhouse gas) emissions will peak. Our country is facing the repercussion of climate change and globally, the world is changing at a faster rate than predicted. NASA recently announced that sea level rising is faster than ever, and 2015 looks certain to be the hottest year ever. Under these circumstances, what is required from COP21 is purposeful action before and after 2020. It is required because India stands in the 4th position for GHG emissions as well as being a burgeoning economy. Furthermore what’s needed is the achievable targets as well as measures that will bring considerable changes in a span of five years.
By using ‘domestic resources’ instead of employing high-end technology. The etymology of domestic resources is using of local skills and innovation to meet the climate change. For example, investment in proven integrated farming techniques practiced by small farmers which is being done in Edamalakudi, Kerala’s remotest panchayat. These farmers have also lit up their home using solar PV installed in the community.
Programmes like government subsidy for off-grid generation via solar or other local resource for each and every village and hamlet. A similar proramme is been undertaken by ‘Barefoot College’ under the leadership of Bunker Roy since 1982. They have electrified Tilonia rural community in Rajasthan and have also created self-help groups for women and entrepreneurs in the community. Such programmes should be encouraged in other states because currently kerosene is been used as a major source for lighting in rural areas which cost anywhere between 16 -18INR and 73.5% of rural households in Bihar still use kerosene as primary source of energy for lighting, followed by Uttar Pradesh (58.5%) and Assam (36.8%). This would only alleviate poverty but also contribute towards India’s ambitious solar mission.
Funding opportunities to nourish raw talent by Integrating power generation and energy services with agriculture, existing agro-processing industries and new village industries can lead to sustainable development. Additionally,reviewing energy conversation and building codes would bring about considerable change as badly designed building that traps heat are becoming energy intensive due to pressure on HVAC (Heating ventilation and air conditioner).
In Delhi, alone per capita energy consumption is 43 units and national average is 23 and further data from CEA (Central Electricity Authority) depicts that Delhi has registered a peak demand of 6006MW in June 2014 which is higher than the peak demand of combined Mumbai, Chandigarh, and Kolkata.
The most stringent rating for air conditioners as stated in report by CSE (Centre for Science and Environment) is 5 star rating. This rating is equivalent to 2.5 in Australia.A comprehensive rating system is important in a country like India where more and more people are using ACs.
Furthermore, practices like adopting incentives for green building and mandatory energy audits for operational buildings should be performed. There should also be a fixed standard for thermostats.
Sustainable Development is not only about putting a solar photo voltaic or making ambitious solar targets. But it is a nexus of efficient transport, innovative green technology and new ways of cooling, adopting of organic farming techniques and inculcating the concept of saving energy among youth. To offset emission carbon emission and setting 2015 level as its peak, the short term goals should be targeted for the next five years.
Author: Yogesh Bhandari is passionate about renewable energy and is an avid reader. He studied at University of Petroleum and energy studies, Dehradun.
Photo courtesy: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/98706376@N00/8054009252″>Figure 6: Solar Sheep (Concentrix Solar PV concentrator plant)</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/”>(license)</a>