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Shravya Reddy’s Blog

India Climate Change and Energy News - Week of October 26 to November 2, 2010

Shravya Reddy

Posted November 4, 2010

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Climate Change

Climate Change: India to Host 48-Nation Talks

“India has once again taken an initiative to break the impasse on climate change. Ahead of the Cancun meet, it will host ‘informal’ talks between ministers from 48 nations to build a consensus on the contentious global mechanism for transfer of environmentally-sound technologies and matching funds to countries that would be most hit by the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC)…. The Ministerial Dialogue would focus on ‘concrete questions’ to promote understanding and work towards consensus building on establishing an International Technology Mechanism and a Financial Mechanism to cover the extra costs that developing countries would suffer on switching to expensive but climate-friendly technologies being pushed under the UNFCC.”

(Indian Express, 11/2/10)

No Emission Cuts at the Cost of Growth: Jairam Ramesh

“India and China may have different greenhouse gas emission levels but what brings the two Asian giants together is the fact that both are opposed to any global pact that would put a brake on their economic growth, environment minister Jairam Ramesh said today…."China's emissions are about four times India's emissions. So by no means can China and India be equated in the level of greenhouse gas emissions," Ramesh said at a seminar on India-China relations organised in New Delhi by Communist Party of China and Congress party…. ‘Even though the levels of emissions are just not different but are dramatically different... we certainly have a commonality of interest in ensuring that there is no international agreement that puts an artificial barrier on our growth prospects,’ he said…. Ramesh said that within the Basic group, climate change was the immediate provocation for India and China to build a very close relationship in coordinating our international position.”

(Daily News & Analysis, 11/1/10)

Emerging Markets Residents More Optimistic on Tackling Climate, HSBC Says

“People in China, India and other emerging economies in Asia are more optimistic than developed nations that climate change can be halted, an international survey by HSBC Holdings Plc shows.  Thirty-three percent of respondents from Vietnam, 32 percent from India and 29 percent from China believe that climate change can be stopped, according to the ‘HSBC Climate Confidence Monitor,’ which surveyed 15,000 people across 15 markets. This compares with 9 percent in the U.S. and 8 percent in Australia, the bank said in an e-mailed statement today.”

(Bloomberg, 10/27/10)

Ramachandran Presides Over Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in Incheon

“Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Mullappally Ramachandran on Wednesday presided over the High Level Round Table-3 on Promoting Integration of Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation into Development for Green Growth at the 4th Asian Ministerial Conference being held in Incheon city of Republic of Korea…. Ramachandran emphasized on the need to understand the implications of the future climate change projections for the current risks and vulnerabilities and accordingly these are factored into the policies and programme developed for reducing the risks of disasters….”

(Sify, 10/28/10)

India’s South Pole Expedition to Study Climate Change

“India will send an expedition to the South Pole to study changes in climate patterns that have taken place in Antarctica in the last thousands of years, an official said here Friday…. Science and technology minister Prithviraj Chavan will flag off the expedition Nov 1, which would start the international celebration of the centenary of man's reaching South Pole in 1911…. The team will leave for Maitri, India's second permanent research station in Antarctica, Nov 1 and will be back mid-December.”

(The Times of India, 10/29/10)


Govt Hopes to Add 4700 MW Renewable Power by 2012

“The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) aims to add another 4,700 MW of renewable power by 2012 to the current capacity of 18,000 MW.  The additional investments expected would be close to Rs 28,800 Crore.  ‘From 2002 onwards, renewable grid capacity has increased by almost five times from 2 per cent to around 11 per cent, and is contributing about 4.13 per cent to the electricity generation mix,’ the Secretary, MNRE, Mr. Deepak Gupta, said.  ‘This compares favourable with that of the EU (European Union) and far exceeds that of the US,’ he added…. He said grid interactive renewable power is getting preferential tariff in States with the most potential, and added that Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) had issued guidelines for deciding such tariffs.”

(The Hindu Business Line, 10/26/10)

10,000 Villages to be Electrified by March 2012, Says Abdullah

“New and Renewable Energy Minister Farooq Abdullah today said that as many as 10,000 remote villages across the country will be electrified with renewable energy sources by March 2012. Much of the power is slated to come from the first 1,000 mega watts (MW) added to the national grid as part of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission…. ‘We will provide electricity to 10,000 villages at the cost of Rs 500 Crore the end of the current plan period,’ he said at a press conference inaugurating the Delhi International Renewable Energy Conference (DIREC).”

(Indian Express, 10/26/10)

India Emerging Key Hub for Wind Turbines

“India, with an installed wind generating capacity of 12,800 MW, is emerging as a major manufacturing hub of wind turbines. As of now, 17 manufacturers have a consolidated annual production capacity of 7,500 MW and nine new companies are expected to enter the Indian wind energy sector in the next one or two years…. Participating in the session, Mr. Steve Sawyer, Secretary-General, Global Wind Energy Council, said globally feed-in tariffs for wind power had been useful in kick-starting the industry. What was now needed was an unambiguous expression of political will either in terms of capacity targets or renewable portfolio standards that would help investors, manufacturers and others in the industry to finalise their plans…. Mr Pramod Deo, Chairman, Central Electricity Regulatory Commission, said a re-assessment of the wind potential was necessary.”

(The Hindu Business Line, 10/27/10)

Environmental Compliance and Governance

No-go, Says Coal Ministry to Jairam’s Green Ideas

“The coal ministry has proposed the reduction of no-go areas for mining to 10% of the total forest cover as against 35% proposed by the environment ministry. This move, though could sound the death knell for forests, has wide support among Central ministries. ‘It is felt that only the cases of pristine forests, or wildlife sanctuaries should be considered where coal mining may not be allowed,’ the coal ministry said in a note prepared for the Cabinet’s consideration…. The argument is that without adequate coal, India may not be able to achieve high economic growth…. Now, the coal ministry has sought the approval of the Cabinet Committee on Infrastructure to issue directions of the environment ministry to speed up forest clearance for all coal blocks as per the current statutes and stipulations with exception of around 10%.”

(The Hindustan Times, 10/26/10)

Environmental Clearance Held up for Coal Requiring Projects

“The environment ministry Monday deferred giving the green signal to all thermal power, steel and sponge iron projects awaiting clearance till the status of their environment and forest clearance for coal supply sources are not furnished…. According to the ministry, they have come across cases where substantial investment and progress has been made for setting up a power or steel plant without the requisite environmental and forestry clearance about the coal blocks from the mines of Coal India…. The ministry said all these projects require a large amount of coal as raw material and availability of requisite quantity of coal is essential to ensure viability of these projects.”

(Sify, 11/1/10)

(Prepared by Andy Gupta, Program Assistant)

Note: The linked articles and excerpts in this post are provided for informational purposes only and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of the India Initiative or of the Natural Resources Defense Council. 

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