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Benefits and challenges of urbanization and low carbon energy needs in India

T. G. Sitharam, Jaya Dhindaw

Abstract

Urbanization has occurred rapidly in India principally due to social, economic and political drivers and has offered improved quality of life, access to amenities and economic opportunities for many. However, this has been accompanied by challenges that include insufficient energy, lack of urban infrastructure, and poor delivery of basic ser-vices, resulting in undesirable environmental impacts, congestion, and urban sprawl. India’s urbanization has placed tremendous demand on the country’s resources. Providing energy to all while maintaining a low carbon footprint is a global priority. Although economic development is anchored by both urbanization and industrialization, urbanization itself is a major determinant of energy use, including energy use related to transportation. Deficiencies in urban planning and management have to be overcome if India’s urban environment is to meet the rising expectations of an expanding urban population and provide an environment consistent with rapid, inclusive and sustainable growth. India's energy demand in 2030 is likely to be double that of current demand. Achieving a greener future in a sustainable way with low energy costs can be addressed by measures such as preferential policies towards renewables, investment in technology and empowerment of local government to meet the low carbon energy needs in India.

 


Keywords

urbanization, low carbon energy, transportation; technology; renewable energy; sustainable

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18063/JSUPP.2016.01.004
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