CO2 emissions from direct energy use of urban households in India

Ahmad, S. , Baiocchi, G. and Creutzig, F. (2015) CO2 emissions from direct energy use of urban households in India. Environmental Science and Technology, 49(19), pp. 11312-11320. (doi: 10.1021/es505814g) (PMID:26359859)

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India hosts the world’s second largest population and offers the world’s largest potential for urbanization. India’s urbanization trajectory will have crucial implications on its future GHG emission levels. Using household microdata from India’s 60 largest cities, this study maps GHG emissions patterns and its determinants. It also ranks the cities with respect to their household actual and “counter-factual” GHG emissions from direct energy use. We find that household GHG emissions from direct energy use correlate strongly with income and household size; population density, basic urban services (municipal water, electricity, and modern cooking-fuels access) and cultural, religious, and social factors explain more detailed emission patterns. We find that the “greenest” cities (on the basis of household GHG emissions) are Bareilly and Allahabad, while the “dirtiest” cities are Chennai and Delhi; however, when we control for socioeconomic variables, the ranking changes drastically. In the control case, we find that smaller lower-income cities emit more than expected, and larger high-income cities emit less than expected in terms of counter-factual emissions. Emissions from India’s cities are similar in magnitude to China’s cities but typically much lower than those of comparable U.S. cities. Our results indicate that reducing urban heat-island effects and the associated cooling degree days by greening, switching to modern nonsolid cooking fuels, and anticipatory transport infrastructure investments are key policies for the low-carbon and inclusive development of Indian cities.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ahmad, Dr Sohail
Authors: Ahmad, S., Baiocchi, G., and Creutzig, F.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Urban Studies
Journal Name:Environmental Science and Technology
Publisher:American Chemical Society
ISSN (Online):1520-5851

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