India is the fastest growing country in terms of demand for energy, as well as the third largest CO2 emitting country in the world. However, India has also placed climate change on high priority, committing to reduce its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions intensity by 33-35 percent by 2030 from the 2005 levels as part of its...
Climate change is strongly impacting India. In 2016, southern states faced crippling droughts, which extended to almost half the country in 2017. And last year, Kerala and parts of Karnataka experienced terrible flooding. These trends highlight the need for adaptation to occur more rapidly, and at scale.
One way to achieve this is to integrate adaptation into the everyday functioning of sectors so that their efforts are protected against the negative impacts of climate change. While this concept of ‘mainstreaming’ is not new, it is not taking place at the scale that is required. In...
“Things get done only if the data we gather can inform and inspire those in a position to make [a] difference.” – Mike Schmoker
Data is making it possible to identify solutions, enhancing problem-solving efficiency significantly. Hidden within the data are answers to some of our most pressing challenges, like climate change. The October 2018 IPCC special report stresses the need to considerably lower climate risks by limiting temperature rise to no more than 1.5 degree of warming by 2100. Everyone –...
Government agencies in India are beginning to adopt open innovation as a means to identify innovative technologies and solutions to improve public services. Open innovation refers to partnerships between companies, individuals and public agencies to create innovative products and services and in the process, share its risks and rewards. It is a process borrowed from the private sector and used to accelerate a company or organization’s internal innovation process and yield optimal solutions for a...
This post originally appeared in WRI Insights.
Forest landscape restoration is not just about planting trees. People are at the heart of restoring degraded and deforested land. This episode of the WRI podcast dives into the Global Restoration Initiative's new publication, Mapping Social Landscapes, which places people at the center...
Intersections are locations where roads merge or cross each other, thus putting multiple modes of traffic from different directions into potential conflict. Although they cover only a fraction of the 2000 kilometre long road network in Mumbai, they account for nearly 40 percent of all high risk zones, or blackspots, in the city. They are also where almost a third of all road traffic fatalities occur. What is even more alarming is that more than half of these fatalities are pedestrians.
Earlier this year, the Mumbai Traffic Police and Vital Strategies, under the Bloomberg...
As one of the fastest growing countries, urbanisation has emerged as an opportunity and a challenge for India with huge implications for the rest of the world. Between 2001 and 2015, the number of cities in India with a population of a million or more increased from 35 to 53. In 2015, India’s urban population reached 420 million – 33 per cent of the total population. This number is expected to double to 800 million by 2050 when one in every two Indians will live in its towns and cities.
The social costs of growth
Today India’s cities not only face severe...
One of the key strategies for the success of the Paris Agreement is the idea of nature based solutions to climate change. Protecting ecosystems and the beneficial services they provide is one of the most immediate and effective solutions for both mitigation and adapting to the impacts of climate change. Over the past decade, a range of nature-based approaches to enhancing resilience have emerged from multiple disciplines. These approaches include ecosystem-based adaptation, green and blue infrastructure, and ecological engineering.
India’s Climate Commitments...
India has set a target of achieving 40 gigawatts (GW) of rooftop solar capacity by 2022. The recent improvements in the performance of solar panels, availability of financing options, and favourable policy and regulatory ecosystems have helped to promote the uptake of rooftop solar in India, especially among industrial and commercial consumers. However, rooftop solar uptake by residential consumers, while promising, is yet to gain momentum.
A concentrated national effort is required to accelerate the deployment of rooftop solar to achieve the target by 2022. Unlike traditional grid...
Every year, ministers and officials from almost all countries in the world meet to discuss how to tackle the problem of climate change. This annual gathering is known as the Conference of Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). At the 2015 COP in Paris, countries agreed to limit global warming to well below 2°C compared with the average temperature that prevailed before the Industrial Revolution started escalating the burning of fossil fuels. Fossil fuels like coal, oil, and gas have become the backbone of the industrial economy, which is why...
Building a Resilient Kochi - A holistic approach to provide Safe Public Transport and Public Spaces in times of a pandemic and beyondby , , e -
Public transport and public spaces serve as lifelines for cities. With the occurrence of COVID 19 pandemic, public transport systems, streets, and public spaces were shut as they are highly prone to the spread of infection, thus putting cities to a grinding halt. Now, the cities are preparing to slowly exit from this ‘lockdown’ phase and embrace the ‘new normal’. This gradual exit requires a meticulous plan with short-term, mid-term, and long-term strategies especially for providing public transport services and opening public spaces.
While the situation in Kochi (which is one of the key anchor cities of Kerala) has been brought under control with immediate measures, there is a very critical need to develop resilient sustainable solutions for a long-term adoption to create safety in public transport modes and city public spaces.
This document is expected to guide the city authorities and agencies to develop a phased approach for public transport and public spaces in Kochi, to tackle the present and future pandemics. It provides action steps specific to the city, to plan, implement, and regulate safe public transport and public spaces, which in turn help to scale this up to other parts of the state and country.
COVID-19 Safety Measures for Public Bus Operations in Indiaby , , , , , e -
Buses are one of the most commonly used and popular modes of transport in India, with over 46% of urban passenger trips being serviced by public buses. However, they are also confined spaces with a lack of adequate ventilation, which makes them high-risk environments for the spread of diseases such as COVID-19.
With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, public transportation across the country stopped to prevent the spread of diseases between the millions of passengers bus systems handle on a daily basis, as well as transit staff. In order for bus services to resume operations effectively and safely, comprehensive measures will need to be implemented across the board.
This document has been created to help prepare bus operations, following the emergency response phase of the pandemic and includes guidelines catered to Indian contexts, based on the best practices adopted by cities around the world.
COVID-19 Public Safety Measures for Metro Systems in Indiaby , e -
India’s metro system carries more than 8 million people across cities every day, forming an integral part of the country’s urban transport system. With the COVID-19 pandemic and the associated lockdown, public transportation came to a halt to avoid spreading disease further.
Metro systems have the potential to be high-risk environments for spreading disease—with a large number of common surfaces and its reliance on air conditioning and closed ventilation. Stations, too, pose a risk. Metros carry a large number of passengers, and ensuring their safety and the safety of metro staff will require careful planning.
To resume metro services safely, operators will need to implement a comprehensive post-lockdown operations plan, to prepare for various scenarios and improve ridership over the long term. This document contains pragmatic suggestions on how to adopt health and safety measures as set out by health agencies and how to communicate these to the public effectively.