Thursday, October 15, 2009


A recent analysis shows that Bangalore stands fifth among more than 50 cities across South Asia in total carbon emission. The city emits 6.36 million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year

The next time you leave the water tap on or forget to switch off the lights while going out, pause and think for a moment. While countries all over the world are stressing the need to bring down carbon emission, Bangalore needs to take many leaps before it can reduce its carbon footprint — the city stands fifth among 53 cities in South Asia (including 40 Indian cities), in terms of carbon dioxide emission.
This has been revealed in a yet-to-be-released City Energy Status Report put together by the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives - South Asia (ICLEI-SA) with support from the British High Commission and is part of a larger initiative called Roadmap of South Asian Cities and Local Governments for the Post 2012 Global Climate Agreement and Actions.’
According to the study, the total carbon emission in the city for 2007-2008 was 63,65,737 tonnes (6.36 million tonnes) while the average carbon dioxide emission per person is 0.82 tonnes.
While Bangalore’s emission level is less than the national average of 1.75 tonnes, the city’s growing contribution to global warming is a cause of concern. Other cities that are part of the study include Mysore, Hyderabad, Delhi, Nagpur, Rajkot, Vishakapatnam, Madurai, Chennai, Kolkata, Kochi and Vijayawada apart from cities in Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh and Bhutan.
According to the report, industrial cities such as Vishakhapatnam and Jamshedpur have a per capita emission more than the national average (more than two tonnes), and the cities such as Haldia and Sangli have lower average of around 0.2 tonnes. The carbon emission inventory of all the cities will be released in New Delhi in the first week of November.
“We collected data from the Bangalore City Corporation in various sectors including residential and commercial activity, street lighting, transportation, water pumping systems and so on and by analysing this we arrived at the carbon emission levels,” said Emani Kumar, Executive Director of ICLEI-South Asia.
While most of us might assume that the high vehicular population in the city is the biggest culprit when it comes to carbon dioxide emissions, this is not exactly the case. Surprisingly, in Bangalore residential uses including electricity, cooking gas (LPG), fuel wood and kerosene amounts for 32 per cent of energy consumption, followed by commercial and industrial (26 per cent each) while transportation amounts to just 13 per cent. This is another reason for us to reflect on our carbon footprint and try to reduce energy consumption.
In terms of corporation level activity, 76 per cent of the energy consumption goes towards water supply and sewerage activities and 21 per cent towards street lighting.
“The ICLEI-SA has suggested an action plan so that the city can reduce its emission by three to five per cent through various measures. This could include using renewable energy sources, energy-efficient and designbased street lighting, effective water supply system and so on. Also we are consolidating the south Asian cities view point on Global Climate change agreement,” Mr Kumar added.


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