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India Green News: As climate change spurs summer flooding, the value of an energy efficient air conditioner is clear

Kristina Johnson

Posted August 29, 2013 in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Reviving the World's Oceans, Solving Global Warming

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August 22nd-28th

India Green News is a selection of news highlights about environmental and energy issues in India

Climate Change

Floods a recurrent phenomenon in state

VARANASI: Different parts of the country are witnessing flood fury with the loss of lives and property. In Uttar Pradesh, the swollen Ganga had flooded many districts of eastern region, including Varanasi, Allahabad, Mirzapur, Ghazipur and Ballia.

According to the Preliminary Consolidated Report on Effect of Climate Change on Water Resources, UP flood events and intensity are likely to increase due to climate change phenomenon, the flood prone-area is further likely to increase. The likely increased sediment flow may affect the morphology of rivers.

(Times of India, 8/27/2013)

Farmer clubs leading way for climate change adaptation in Central India's semi-arid plains

Development Alternatives, an organisation working to promote natural resource management in the climate sensitive Bundelkhand region of Central India has successfully formed several farmers' clubs to help the rural community adopt climate resilient agricultural techniques.

Farmers receive training on water efficient irrigation practices like drip and sprinkler irrigation, use of drought resistant seed varieties, organic farming, line sowing, dry sowing, agroforestry, horticulture and integrated pest management.

(Business Standard, 8/26/2013)

Energy

Global air-conditioning: Are we cooling our way to a warmer planet?

With some of the fastest-growing nations situated in some of the world's hottest climates, the use of air conditioning is expected to skyrocket in coming decades. Skip to next paragraphIt's good news for public health and economic productivity, but there are concerns about the large amount of energy needed to meet that demand, especially in countries that still rely predominantly on the most polluting sources of electricity.

"Should the world eventually adapt the US level of need for cooling, energy demand for air conditioning would be equal to about 50 times the current demand for cooling in the US," said Michael Sivak, a researcher at the University of Michigan and author of a study of global air conditioning use published in the September-October 2013 issue of American Scientist.

(Christian Science Monitor, 8/22/2013)

Explosive solar growth in India followed by stagnation over protectionism

India’s solar market has exploded. In 2011 it had 190 megawatts of installed solar. Now there is more than 1.8 gigawatts of solar installed in the country. In fact, in the first seven months of 2013 India installed 622 megawatts of solar power—and it’s started to stall. The country has installed 73 megawatts in the last three months as the country has pursued anti-dumping and domestic content requirements.

“The decisions made by India to pursue anti-dumping investigations and domestic content requirements (DCR) have all but paralyzed the sector,” said Raj Prabhu, CEO, Mercom Capital Group.

(CleanEnergyAuthority.com, 8/23/2013)

India’s Gujarat Waives Renewable Targets for State Utilities

Regulators in India’s Gujarat state waived clean-energy targets for power distribution companies in a blow to the country’s market for trading renewable credits.

State utility Gujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Ltd. and Ahmedabad-based Torrent Power Ltd. (TPW) had petitioned against a rule requiring them last fiscal year to source 7 percent of their power from renewable sources or buy credits over the power exchanges to fulfill the obligation.

Gujarat Electricity Regulatory Commission sided with the companies, saying enforcement of the rule would “unjustifiably burden” consumers with higher electricity prices, according to a copy of the order posted on the regulator’s website.

(Bloomberg, 8/27/2013)

Environmental Health and Governance

Pollution from Asia Linked to High Mercury Levels in Pacific Fish

Getting India and China to reduce their mercury emissions will likely lead to healthier fish in the Pacific. A new study has found that mercury levels in fish that are caught off the coast of Hawaii are high due to toxins released from Asian countries. Researchers have even predicted that levels of mercury in North Pacific fish will rise with increase in global pollution.

(Nature World News, 9/26/2013)

Air pollution: Are Indian cities better off than the West?

The good news: Indian cities pump out far less nitrogen dioxide (NO2), a bellwether of urban air pollution, than their counterparts in the West and China, a new study by the US space agency Nasa has found.

The bad news: Overall NO2 levels in Indian cities are soaring, even as they head southwards in the West, and—as a World Bank study notes—13 of the world’s 20 most polluted cities are in India.

(Livemint, 8/22/2013)

For more news on the issues we care about, visit our India News archive or read our other International blogs.

 

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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