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ECONOMIC ASPECTS OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN INDIA

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INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

Almost all ministries of the Government of India  are involved in decision making for sustainable development. However, major participation is by the Ministries of External Affairs,  Environment and Forests, Agriculture, Water Resources, Finance, Industries, Rural Development, Commerce , Non Conventional Energy Sources, Finance and the Planning Commission.

Coordination within the different bodies of the Government in India is mainly through consultative meetings and discussions. There are inter-ministerial and inter-departmental committees, Core Groups for coordination to formulate the optimum policy and legislation on issues concerning international cooperation/development assistance for Sustainable Development.

The authority for decision-making lies with the ministries of the Government of India .In India the decentralization of powers and decision making has been done at the grass root level. The  authority for decision making has been delegated to provincial/State level in several areas  with  the exception of core areas of national interest. In matters of international relations and co-operation the central government coordinates the overall decision making process.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

Government of India has have formulated legislation, regulations and policy instruments to address matters concerning cooperation for Sustainable Development at sub-regional, regional and International  level.  There are legislation regulations and policy instruments framed to fulfill obligation under the agreements signed under the International Conferences, MEAs, etc.  They are:-

 INDIAN ENVIRONMENTAL LEGISLATIONS

Selected Policy initiatives taken by the Ministry of Environment and Forests towards sustainable development

AUTHORITIES UNDER ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION ACT, 1986

A National Environmental Appellate Authority has been constituted to hear appeals with respect to rejection of proposals from the environmental angle. The objective is to bring in transparency in the process and accountability, and to ensure the smooth and expeditious implementation of developmental schemes and projects.            

An Environmental Impact Assessment Authority for the National Capital Region has been constituted to deal with environmental protection problems arising out of projects planned in the National Capital Region (NCR). An Aquaculture Authority has been constituted to deal with the situation created by the Shrimp Culture industry in the coastal States and Union Territories. The Central Ground Water Authority for regulation and control of ground water management has initiated action regarding registrations for ground water pollution/depletion. It has also initiated a mass awareness programme. Besides this, different authorities have been created for dealing with specific problems in the States of Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.

The trade policy components of the Indian reform process undertaken since July 1991 have been motivated by a  recognition of the important role that trade can play in promoting sustained economic growth in the context of sustainable development. The expanded scope for specializing in areas of comparative advantage is manifest in the improved growth performance of the economy. Furthermore, while exports have responded to the removal of the anti-export bias of a protectionist environment, domestic industry appears to have been stimulated by the expanded availability of imports and capital goods, and the challenge of competing in the international market place. The positive response of Indian industry to deregulation is amply demonstrated by the capital goods sector. The capital goods industry, which witnessed  negative growth of 12.8% in 1991-92, registered an average growth of about 23% during 1994-96.

In an effort to remove the anti-export bias of existent policies, improve the efficiency of resource allocation as well as the competitiveness of domestic markets, India has made steady progress in eliminating quantitative restrictions, licensing, and discretionary controls over imports since 1991. Imports of capital goods, raw materials, and components have been de-licensed, tariffs on such imports have been reduced substantially, and tariff categories have been streamlined and simplified. As a result, all goods can now be freely imported and exported, except those belonging to two negative lists.  

Indian companies have made investments in several countries all over the world including  the neighboring countries in the Indian sub continent.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The Ministry of Environment and Forests functions as a nodal agency for United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), South Asia Co-operation Environment Programme (SACEP), and International Centre for Integrated Mountain and Development (ICIMOD), International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) and various international agencies, regional bodies and multilateral institutions. India is signatory to the following important international treaties/ agreements in the field of environment: (i) International Convention for the regulation of Whaling; (ii) International Plant Protection Convention; (iii) The Antarctic Treaty; (iv) Convention on Wetlands of international importance; (v) Convention on International trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna; (vi) Protocol of 1978 relating to the international convention for the prevention of pollution from ships; (vii) Vienna Convention for the protection of the Ozone Layer; (viii) Convention on Migratory Species; (ix) Basel Convention on Trans-boundary movement of hazardous substances; (x) Framework Convention on Climate Change; (xi) Convention on conservation of bio-diversity; (xii) Montreal Protocol on the substances that deplete the ozone layer and; (xiii) International Convention for Combating Desertification.

The Ministry and its agencies cooperate with various countries such as Sweden, Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Australia, U.K., U.S.A., Canada, Japan , Germany among others bilaterally and from several UN and other multilateral agencies such as the UNDP, World Bank, Asian Development Bank, OECF (Japan) and ODA (U.K.) for various environmental and forestry projects.

India believes that environmentally harmful processes should be stopped and that over-exploitation of non-renewable resources should be controlled. However, the specific production process to be used would depend upon the absorptive capacities and development priorities of the country concerned and hence, no global harmonized standard for production processes can be developed. The solution lies not in unilaterally banning trade, but rather in transferring technology and offering prices to developing countries for commodities, which would not then necessitate their overexploitation or jeopardize their development priorities.

 

India is signatory to various regional and international agreements, which provide financial assistance for development cooperation.

The issue of technology transfer from developed to developing countries has been a recurring theme in all multi-lateral and bilateral negotiations/ discussions and is at the heart of the North-South divide.  At the same time, efforts to develop a mechanism to actually to carry out such a transfer have met with only moderate success so far. Indian research and development (R&D) efforts, unlike in the developed countries, has remained largely in the Government domain e.g. the CSIR and University  laboratories. In India, initial steps have been taken through the National Productivity Council established with GEF assistance and UNEP as the implementing agency.  The initiative however, has a limited scope in so far as it only addresses a small portion of the problem.

In the Export-Import Policy of 1992-97 conscious efforts were made to dismantle various protectionist and regulatory policies and accelerate the country’s transition towards a global economy. The 8th Five Year Plan (1997-2002) seeks to consolidate the gains of previous policy and further carry forward the process of liberalization involving further deregulation, simplification of procedure and removal of QRs.  Efforts have been made to mobilize resources from domestic and external sources for development, cooperation in sustainable development including environment protection.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

All the major groups identified in Agenda 21 are involved in decision making in different capacities. Participation of these groups is ensured through consultative meetings and discussions at local, state and national levels.

Government of India has made public hearings mandatory for developmental projects wherein affected person, stakeholders are given opportunity of hearing/discussion before arriving at a decision.  Public participation is also an important step in every major decision for social, economic and sustainable development.  Participation is encouraged by bringing in transparency in decision making.

Major groups which participate in international cooperation activities programmes are indigenous groups, NGOs, Industrial Associates, Investigators, Research Institutions, Advocates, etc.  The Government facilitate the participation of  various groups in arriving at a decision  in a more participatory manner.

India has had modest, but increasing success in attracting  private capital flows. Furthermore, much of these private capital inflows into India have been of the non-debt creating variety, which has helped boost the balance of payments as well as the availability of invertible resources in the economy. The international community is very positive about India's effort to achieve a high rate of growth. After the advent of liberalization which was initiated in 1991, the involvement of private sector (local and foreign) has been encouraged.

The bulk of India’s population is still rural and engaged in agriculture which generates nearly one third of India’s national income. While economic reforms have been mainly confined to the industrial sector, they have affected agriculture since these reforms have significantly altered relative prices and protection. A fall in agricultural prices has an undesirable effect on the welfare of the people who depend upon agriculture. In India’s context globalization in terms of liberalization of agricultural trade can have a profound impact on the poor. India feels that there remains a need for an alternative agricultural trade agenda that promotes greater food-self sufficiency and food security in the developing countries rather than promoting global harmonization of standards in subsidies.

The most adversely affected groups are  thus small farmers and  small scale industries. These groups are protected by provision food security, better prices for their products, incentives and other facilities to improve their performance to make them competitive.

Programmes and Projects   

Several activities and programmes involving multilateral financing are ongoing in India which include

Global Environment Facility through the World Bank, UNDP and UNEP:   India is the second largest recipient of GEF funding. The salient feature of the GEF portfolio are: a diverse and varied portfolio comprising  projects that are environmentally, socially and financially sustainable; projects involving a range of issues and approaches to address the questions of innovation, experimentation, demonstration, cost effectiveness and replicability; projects that are country-driven, based on national priorities; capacity building, human resources and skills at the community level and into Government.

The Country cooperation Framework- I Environment Programme through the UNDP:        Development Objective: The thrust areas reflect the national policy and plan statements – (i) management of natural resources (ii) capacity building for decision making (iii) management of development (iv) information, advocacy and participation.

Montreal protocol: The Protocol sets out a time schedule for freeze and reduction of ODS or controlled substances. A Multilateral Fund was established by the parties to assist developing countries meet the control measures as specified in the Protocol. It assists the Government and the industry to design, implement, monitor and evaluate ODS phase-out projects and programmes in the aerosols/foam/solvent refrigeration and fire extinguishing sectors, covering large, medium and small scale enterprises. The MOEF is the national executing agency for the Institutional Strengthening projects for the phase-out of ODSs under the Montreal Protocol. In Asia, India is number three in receiving funds for CFC phase out programme, next  to China and Malaysia.

Capacity 21 Initiative: There is only one Capacity 21 project in India which is being implemented by the Indira Gandhi Institute for Development Research (IGIDR) through the Ministry of Environment & Forests. The main objective of the project is to build capacity at various levels of Government, national institutes and the community at large through NGOs by introducing concepts of environmental economics into their resource use and planning decisions.  Specific interventions of natural resource accounting through practical applications at policy and field levels include – Air quality, Water Quality, Biodiversity and Common Property Resources. IGIDR have come out with documentation on the above areas.

LIFE programme of UNDP: The Programme of Action for Sustainable Development Worldwide, Agenda 21, was adopted by more than 178 governments at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. The Local Initiative Facility for Urban Environment (LIFE) was launched by UNDP at this Summit. The main goal of the programme is to help city dwellers to help themselves, to find local solutions to local problems.

SDNP: The Sustainable Development Network Programme is a UNDP initiative launched globally in 1990 to make relevant information on sustainable development readily available to decision-makers responsible for planning sustainable development strategies.

In India there are several ongoing projects which are being implemented through various bilateral programmes. Some of these include CIDA, IDRC, OECF/Japan, JICA, and other bilateral cooperation programmes with countries inter -alia including U.K., Norway, Sweden and Germany.  The main thrust of these programmes is on

The largest share is for poverty eradication , natural resource protection and capacity building in that order. The amounts are miniscule compared to the needs of the country.

India is part of SAPTA (South Asian Preferential Trade Agreement) and BIMSTEC and in these regional groupings, the question of market accessibility and trade has received due consideration.

Status   

The balance continues to weigh in favor of ODA and bilateral assistance. Though there has been a slight increase in private flows.

Challenges  

Some of the major challenges for building partnership with countries which are in various stages of economic development, are inadequate implementation of commitments, transfer of technology, financial constraints  market access and standards.

The programme areas/issues of Agenda 21 which require most immediate attention for bilateral/multi-lateral cooperation are fulfillment of obligations of transfer of technology, financial assistance, capacity building, public participation, involvement of NGOs and private sector, R&D institutions and scientific/business community.

Some of the major challenges in building partnerships with NGOs and private sector scientific community. 

- recognizing the sustainable development as mutual goal

-lack of understanding of issues for achieving sustainable development

-development of various tools/instruments and their implementation

-paucity of financial resources.

There are DGFT, Inter-Ministerial Committees, Core Groups, Bureau of Indian Standards which are responsible for various types of standards setting.  The Committees/agencies coordinate which each other and also interact with international agencies  for avoidance of technical barrier in the flow of trade.  However, some with the consideration and information gap pose challenges.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

The following initiatives have been taken to promote public awareness on environmental issues in general they include awareness about international co-operation and sustainable development

Environmental Information systems

Since environment for sustainable development is a broad-ranging, multi-disciplinary subject, a comprehensive information system on environment has necessarily involved effective participation of concerned institutions/ organisations in the country that are actively engaged in work relating to different subject areas of environment. Realizing the importance of Environmental Information, the Government of India, in December 1982, established an Environmental Information System (ENVIS) as a plan programme. The focus of ENVIS since inception has been on providing environmental information to decision makers, policy planners, scientists and engineers, research workers, etc. all over the country. A large number of nodes, known as ENVIS Centres, have been established in the network to cover the broad subject areas of environment. Similarly the Sustainable Development Networking Programme (SDNP) is a UNDP/IDRC initiative launched world-wide in 1990 to make relevant information on sustainable development readily available to decision-makers responsible for planning sustainable development strategies. SDNP-India is being implemented by the ENVIS a GOI programme, over a period of three years.

Environment Education and Awareness Generation

Capacity building initiatives by the GOI in various sectors relating to the environment are an ongoing process and form an integral part of most projects and programs on sustainable development. Steps are taken to involve NGOs in organizing orientation training courses for teachers. The two centres of Excellence, namely the Centre for Environment Education, Ahmedabad and the CPR Environment Education Centre, Chennai provide the backup support to the NGOs. GOI's efforts towards Non-formal Environmental Education & Awareness include:

None of the government and civil society actions would mean much without the media. The GOI’s Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, through the mass communication media consisting of radio, television, films, the press, publications, advertising and traditional mode of dance and drama plays a significant part in helping the people to have access to free flow of information on issues including environmental protection.

Programmes (as mentioned above)have been carried out to nurture technical experts and professionals in international relations through UNCTAD. 

The areas of project formulations, project management and implementation require strengthening. Technical experts, managers and administrators are coordinating their efforts to ensure co-operation is relevant and practical.

Information   

http://envfor.nic.in

http://goidirectory.nic.in/ministry.htm

Research and Technologies   

India has increasingly recognized the critical role of  technology. India has a strong base in technology and R&D institutions. As regards Environmentally Sound Technology , India  still needs technical, financial assistance. These issues are the current priorities in the programmes/policies being implemented in achieving sustainable development.

Public investment for sustainable development through fiscal incentives and concessions has always been emphasized . Since energy-efficient technologies and non-conventional energy technologies directly improve the protection level of the atmosphere, several tax concessions, 100% depreciation allowance, and investment subsidies have been made widely available.

The promotion of environmentally sound technologies through international cooperation is mainly in the form of FDI Joint Venture.  However, ESTs as envisaged in various MEAs are not being transferred to developing  countries on fair and favorable terms and conditions.

Public investment for sustainable development by providing fiscal incentives and concessions has  been emphasized . Since energy-efficient technologies and non-conventional energy technologies directly improve the protection level of the atmosphere, several tax concessions, 100% depreciation allowance, and investment subsidies have been made widely available.

Financing   

The goal of Agenda 21 was in part to raise additional external funds for sustainable development activities by increasing bilateral and multilateral Official Development Assistance (ODA) to 0.7% of GNP from donor countries. The fact remains that many of the developing countries are experiencing a net outflow of resources. The average ODA in the post-Rio period 1993-95 has been lower than in the period 1990-92, both in absolute terms and as a percentage of GNP. In fact, ODA at an average of 0.29% of GNP in the 1993-95 period has been the lowest in decades.

In the context of declining ODA, we have to find adequate financing for environmental measures either from our own budgetary resources or by generating funds from the private sector. Domestic resources will continue to be an important source for financing sustainable development and  countries need to develop an enabling environment to encourage the mobilization of additional financial resources. Key elements include a sound macroeconomic framework, a dynamic private sector, governance and participatory mechanisms. Special attention is being given to fiscal and budgetary policies, tax collection and transparency.

The following sources are being tapped for financial assistance and there are:

Cooperation

The Ministry of Environment and Forests functions as a nodal agency for United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), South Asia Co-operation Environment Programme (SACEP), and International Centre for Integrated Mountain and Development (ICIMOD), International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) and various international agencies, regional bodies and multilateral institutions.

India is signatory to the following important international treaties/ agreements in the field of environment:

(i)     International Convention for the regulation of Whaling;

(ii)    International Plant Protection Convention;

(iii)  The Antarctic Treaty;

(iv)  Convention on Wetlands of international importance;

(v)   Convention on International trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna;

(vi)  Protocol of 1978 relating to the international convention for the prevention of pollution from ships;

(vii)Vienna Convention for the protection of the Ozone Layer;

(viii) Convention on Migratory Species;

(ix)  Basel Convention on Trans-boundary movement of hazardous substances;

(x)   Framework Convention on Climate Change;

(xi)  Convention on conservation of bio-diversity;

(xii)Montreal Protocol on the substances that deplete the ozone layer and;

(xiii) International Convention for Combating Desertification.

The Ministry and its agencies cooperate with various countries such as Sweden, Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Australia, U.K., U.S.A., Canada, Japan , Germany among others bilaterally and from several UN and other multilateral agencies such as the UNDP, World Bank, Asian Development Bank, OECF (Japan) and ODA (U.K.) for various environmental and forestry projects.

Sustainable development is an important consideration in Bilateral trade agreements that India has signed.

The role can be described as active. India has been the spokesman of the G-77 and China on Climate Change and has played a major role in UNEP.

Productive, cordial and mutually beneficial.

Click here for the list of abbreviations 

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This information was provided by the government of India to the 9th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update:  April 2001.

 

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TRADE

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations   

India is among the countries, which are in the vanguard of environmental protection. India has environmental standards for products and processes, has environmental impact assessment and has introduced environmental audit as well as an eco-labeling scheme. India believes that environmentally harmful processes should be stopped and that over-exploitation of non-renewable resources should be controlled. However, the specific production process to be used would depend upon the absorptive capacities and development priorities of the country concerned and hence, no global harmonized standard for production process can be developed. The solution lies not in unilaterally banning trade, but rather in transferring technology and offering prices to developing countries for commodities, which would not then necessitate their overexploitation or jeopardize their development priorities.

In an effort to remove the anti-export bias of existent policies, improve the efficiency of resource allocation as well as the competitiveness of domestic markets, India has made steady progress in eliminating quantitative restrictions, licensing, and discretionary controls over imports since 1991. Imports of capital goods, raw materials, and components have been de-licensed, tariffs on such imports have been reduced substantially, and tariff categories have been streamlined and simplified. As a result, all goods can now be freely imported and exported, except those belonging to two negative lists. In accordance with the provisions of WTO, a country is required to lift quantitative restrictions on imports imposed for Balance of Payments reasons when the position improves. As the position of foreign exchange reserves is comfortable, India has decided to phase out quantitative restrictions in respect of all items where such restrictions were maintained for balance of payments purposes.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

With the objective of accelerating the pace of reforms, sustaining high export growth, and enhancing the opportunities for the domestic economy's participation in the dynamics of foreign trade, the Export-Import (EXIM) Policy 1992-97 has been reviewed and revised in several ways during the current year to further phase out quantitative and qualitative restrictions. The revisions include measures for trade promotion, as well as further simplification of procedures. The trade policy components of the Indian reform process undertaken since July 1991 have been motivated by a full recognition of the important role that trade can play in promoting sustained economic growth in the context of sustainable development. Restrictive trade barriers and practices must be curtailed, and tariffs, particularly peak tariffs, on exports of products and services from developing countries reduced so that the benefits of global economic growth are equitably distributed among all countries. Greater trading opportunities can enable developing countries to invest more in environmental protection.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

It need not be emphasized that poverty is intrinsically related to both trade and investment. In the last World Bank meeting in December 1999 at Seattle, due to lack of understanding of the need of the poverty stricken population by the planners the meeting could not progress further. At the international level linkage between trade and poverty is addressed in India's contribution to the discussions in the CTE of WTO regularly.

Programmes and Projects

The Environmental Impact Assessment programme of the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India is intended to indentify "hot spots" in the integration of trade and environment issues. 

Status   

The expanded scope for specializing in areas of comparative advantage is manifest in the improved growth performance of the economy. Furthermore, while exports have responded to the removal of the anti-export bias of a protectionist environment, domestic industry appears to have been stimulated by the expanded availability of imports and capital goods, and the challenge of competing in the international market place. The positive response of Indian industry to deregulation is amply demonstrated by the capital goods sector. The capital goods industry, which witnessed a negative growth of 12.8% in 1991-92, registered an average growth of about 23% during 1994-96. The main agricultural commodities exported from India are Rice, Tobacco, Spices, Cashew, Oil meals, Fruits and Vegetables fresh and processed, marine products, tea and coffee. As regards imports, the main items are pulses, unprocessed Cashewnuts, vegetable oils and sugar.

Export, as a percentage of GDP at constant prices is less than 1% in India. Hence, local or national environmental problems in India are more associated with domestic production. Trade, as a percentage of GDP, has more or less remained constant at about 20% in India.

Challenges  

The linkage between trade and poverty from the environmental point of view is addressed in a multifunctional manner in India. Environmental requirements in the markets for Indian exports could cause loss of exports. This could be unnecessary especially where there are environmental restrictions based on processes and production methods or based on the precautionary principle and where the measures are susceptible to disguised protectionism. This in turn would make less money available to national policy makers to direct towards environmental protection. Poverty, it is said, is the biggest polluter and this holds particularly true for us, as fund constraints may be one of the major handicaps in addressing environmental problems through appropriate national environmental policy. The inability of the developed world to implement provisions of Agenda 21 in letter and spirit has added to the problems.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information 

Information related to trade, investment and economic growth is made available to potential users via the Internet:
- http://www.envfor.nic.in
- http://www.nic.in/commin

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing   

India has had modest, but increasing, success in attracting a growing part of private capital flows. Furthermore, much of these private capital inflows into India have been of the non-debt creating variety, which has helped boost the balance of payments as well as the availability of investable resources in the economy. The international community is very positive about India's effort to achieve a high rate of growth.

Cooperation

India believes that in order to make trade and environment mutually supportive, an open multilateral trading system makes possible a more efficient allocation and use of resources. This contributes to increased production and incomes, and lessens the demands on the environment. It also provides the additional resources needed for economic growth and development, and improved environmental protection. Trade measures should be applied for environmental purposes only when they address the root causes of environmental degradation so as not to result in an unjustified restriction on trade. Further, environmental standards valid for developed countries may have unwarranted social and economic cost in developing countries. India believes that global efforts at environmental protection are best addressed through Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs), which contain a package of positive measures, including among them financial and technological transfers and capacity building.

Today, the world stands at a crossroad of history. Five years after Rio, and as we approach the third millennium, it falls on the global community to create a world where there is greater justice and lesser deprivation. Any models based on uneven rewards will not be supported by those members who are not beneficiaries. Credibility and realization of the potential of all international activities can only be achieved through the full participation of all countries in their formulation, implementation, and enjoyment of benefits. India is willing to work with all countries in a constructive manner to realize common goals.

India submits a report on its trade to WTO every four years as part of its trade policy review and reports to IMF and the World Bank.

The World Trade Organization's (WTO) Committee on Trade and Environment has undertaken many of these activities. In its five years of work, it has promoted a dialogue between trade, development, and environment communities and stressed the need for transparency, avoidance of unilateral action to deal with environmental challenges outside the jurisdiction of the importing country, and avoidance of the use of trade restrictions or distortions as a means to offset the difference in costs arising from environmental distortions and protectionism. Further priority work under the Committee and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) should include elaborate studies for better understanding of the relationship between trade and environment, particularly for sustainable development in developing countries. India realizes the vital need for international cooperation - bilateral, multilateral, and regional initiatives - in implementing Agenda 21. India is committed to developing and strengthening the process of international cooperation, which would cover not only cooperation among governments and international agencies but also among other major actors such as the private sector, civil society, and voluntary organizations. The international community should develop the appropriate open, equitable, rule based, cooperative, non-discriminatory, and mutually beneficial economic environment at the international level. It should take into account the special needs of the developing countries, in line with the concept of common but differentiated responsibilities affirmed in Agenda 21. The international community should, therefore, aim to attain the target of 0.7% of GNP for the Official Development Assistance (ODA) from developed countries. There is also an urgent need for new and additional financial resources on a predictable and assured basis from the international community to developing countries. These resources should be available commensurate with the needs and priorities of developing countries and without any conditions.

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This information was provided by the government of India to the 5th and 8th Sessions of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: February 2000.

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CHANGING CONSUMPTION PATTERNS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

The responsible Government bodies dealing with aspects of sustainable consumption and production patterns include: the Agricultural Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), New Delhi; Indian Institute of Plantation Management (IIPM), Bangalore; Central Pollution Control Board, Bureau of Indian Standards and National Productivity Council, State Environment Protection Councils, and the National Consumer Council.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

Legislation which seeks to promote sustainable consumption and production include:

Show Cause notices under Section 5 of the Environment (Protection) Act 1986 have been issued to all defaulting units. In addition, National ambient air quality standards, including ambient noise standards, have been notified. Industries have been directed to instal necessary pollution control equipment within a stipulated time frame.

More stringent norms for vehicular emissions have been notified under the Central Motor Vehicles Rules which came into effect in April, 1996. The supply of unleaded petrol in the four metropolitan cities of Mumbai, Calcutta, Delhi, and Chennai was introduced in April 1, 1995 for use in four wheel vehicles fitted with catalytic converters. The use of unleaded petrol will be gradually extended to other cities in the country.
In order to enhance energy and material efficiency, waste reduction, recycling, public transport and quality of life, norms have been laid down by the Government of India. Industry has adopted, on a voluntary basis, EMS (Environment Management Systems, in order to attain more sustainable production.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

National Strategy and policies that address the concerns of this area include:

Specific issues such strategies and policies address are the following:

The ongoing initiatives of Government to improve the environment include preventive as well as promotive measures. Fiscal incentives are provided by the government to encourage the installation of appropriate pollution abatement equipment in the form of customs waivers and soft loans. Industries are encouraged and fiscal incentives support the installation of equipment for pollution control; punitive measures including legal action are taken against defaulting units.

To achieve the goal of pollution abatement, emission and effluent standards for air, water, and noise have been notified. Regular monitoring is carried out and enforcement efforts have been intensified. A m ajority of identified units have already installed the requisite pollution control equipment According to data collected by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) on September 30, 1996, out of 1,551 units belonging to 17 categories of highly polluting industries, 1,259 units have facilities to comply with the environmental standards, 112 were closed, and 180 did not have adequate facilities.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

At the local and provincial levels, the responsible authorities are the regional offices of the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), State Pollution Control Boards (SPCBs), and State Consumer Councils.  The view of Major Groups and the public in general are solicited. Standards and criteria are evolved and finalised only after circulating them for public comments and views.

Programmes and Projects   

Government Programmes, in partnership with industries, consumer associations and others, to promote sustainable consumption and production patterns include:

Twenty-four critically polluted areas in the country have been identified and action plans have been drawn up to improve the quality of the environment in these areas (1997). Adoption of Cleaner Production Technologies and formation of Waste Minimization Circles are being encouraged to minimize environmental pollution. Under the World Bank aided Industrial Pollution Control Project, technical and financial assistance is provided for establishing Common Effluent Treatment Plants (CETPs) in clusters of small scale industrial units. An Eco-Mark scheme has been launched to certify various products of industries which fulfil the prescribed standards of environment-friendly production, packaging, and waste disposal.

The major programmes for new and renewable sources of energy which were developed and enlarged during the Seventh Five Year Plan included National projects on bio-gas development, improved Chulhas, solar, thermal energy utilization, Solar Photo Voltaics (SPV), wind energy, and conversion of bio-mass into energy, energy plantations, and bio-mass gasifiers.

Status   

The process of development is sharply raising the consumption of household energy. It is imperative to support the development of non-conventional or renewable sources of energy to sustain the development process. Sun, wind, water, and biomass are renewable, perennial, dependable, and widely available sources of energy. The generation and utilization of energy from renewable sources have tremendous potential. According to available statistical data (information provided in 1997), India accumulates 300 million tonnes of agro residues every year of which only a small quantity is used as direct fuel. The potential of bio-mass energy is placed at 17,000 MW and of solar energy at SX10l: KWHours/year. Using a conservative assessment, wind power potential in the country is around 20,000 MW and mini hydro-energy 5,000 MW. 

The total wave power potential from ocean energy along India's 1600 km coastline is 40,000 MW. Patterns of consumption by the very poor, even when unsustainable in the short term, must be regarded primarily as survival consumption. Overuse of agricultural land, over-grazing of pasture land, and the depletion of forests for fuel wood are all manifestations of a survival economy. To speak of such consumption as being unsustainable, and hence requiring change, without addressing the human condition that leads to such consumption, is not only unethical but also impractical.   

The efficient usage of energy, water and other materials by industries and by households, is gaining recognition, acceptance and picking up progressively.  Recycling and reuse has long been an established tradition in Indian society. Deposit and refund practices have been quite widespread in the consumer industry in India. An extensive and effective collection and recycling system for wastes such as glass, tin scrap iron, brass, rubber, paper, and plastics thrives in the non-formal sector. Consumers are increasingly aware of the health effects of residual pesticides and fertilizers. Textile, leather, and other industries are switching to cleaner technologies.  In addition, the use of both recharging and reuse are having significant impacts in changing unsustainable consumption and production patterns.

Challenges  

Priority constraints to implementing effective programmes in this area include:

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

The Government of India has been trying to create an awareness towards moderation of demand and the adoption of a consumption pattern which would not leave a deleterious impact on the environment. The Government, for example, has embarked on an extensive awareness campaign through the print and television media to stress the need to save scarce water, energy, and petroleum resources. This is in conformity with the importance given by Mahatma Gandhi in his thinking on nation and character building.
Programmes for policy makers, industries, and/or consumers designed to educate and raise their awareness for more sustainable consumption and production patterns include:

Awareness campaign programmes to promote sustainable consumption patterns are carried out through Programmes of Quality Council of India/BIS/MOEF/CPCB/Consumer Protection Councils.

Information   

The kinds of national information available to assist both decision-makers and industry managers to plan and implement appropriate policies and programmes in this area include:

There is a monitoring system is in place to oversee enforcement of relevant laws, regulations and standards. This is carried out by the State Pollution Control Boards (SPCB), Regional offices of SPCBs, and Regional offices of the Ministry of Environment and Forests.

Environment indicators are being developed under the Environment Management Capacity Building Project.

Research and Technologies  

Major research and pilot projects and activities are underway in the following areas:

Clean and environmentally sound technologies are promoted and applied through the following means:

Other technology-related issues that are being addressed, in this area are

Financing   

Activities in this area are financed by the national budget and through external assistance.

Cooperation  

Cooperation is carried out between the Government and the World Bank, UNDP, ADB and through bilateral arrangements with a few countries in order to further activities related to promoting sustainable consumption and production patterns.

* * * 

This information was provided by the Government of India to the 5th and 7th Dessions of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 1999.

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FINANCING

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

In India, the Government has embarked on a macro economic stabilization programme since 1991. Structural reforms in the foreign trade and payments regime, the tax system, industrial policy, and the financial sector have been undertaken, all of which are likely to have implications for the environment. While the Government is attempting to raise resources internally for sustainable development, the importance of international assistance cannot be minimized.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

In respect of investments including foreign investments, the entrepreneurs are required to obtain Statutory clearances relating to Pollution Control and Environment for setting up an industrial project. A Notification issued under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 has listed 29 projects in respect of which environmental clearance needs to be obtained from the Ministry of Environment & Forests. This lists includes industries like petro-chemical complexes, petroleum refineries, cement, thermal power plants, bulk drugs, fertilisers, dyes, paper, etc. However, if investment is less than Rs.500 million, such clearance is not necessary, unless it is for pesticides, bulk drugs and pharmaceuticals, asbestos and asbestos products, integrated paint complexes, mining projects, tourism projects of certain parameters, tarred roads in Himalayan areas, distilleries, dyes, foundries and electroplating industries. Further, any item reserved for the small-scale sector with investment of less than Rs.10 million is also exempt from obtaining environmental clearance form the Central Government under the Notification.

Powers have been delegated to the State Governments for grant of environmental clearance for certain categories of thermal power plants. Setting up industries in certain locations considered ecologically fragile (e.g. Aravalli Range, Coastal areas, Doon Valley, Dahanu etc.) are guided by separate guidelines issued by the Ministry of Environment & Forests.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

India's Eighth Five Year Plan was drafted in the context of severe resource constraints, and a serious balance of payments situation. The sources of financing projected in the Plan differ from earlier plans in that it seeks to reduce dependence on borrowing, domestic as well as foreign, and on deficit financing, placing greater reliance on resource mobilization and economy in government expenditure. The Eighth Plan contemplates an investment of Rs.7,980 billion (US$ 266,000 million). Considerable reliance is placed on savings of the household sector.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

The process to identify environmentally unsustainable subsidy is ongoing and measures are being taken to phase them out. Last year, the Government of Kerala had agreed to phase out subsidies to pulp wood producers over a period of five years.

Status   

Implementation of sustainable development programmes as detailed as Agenda 21, requires large amounts of investment. The United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) Secretariat estimated that implementation of all activities under Agenda 21 during 1993-2000 would require additional resources of US $ 125 billion a year. This is in addition to the US $ 500 billion a year from National governments and the private sector in developing countries to put their countries on a sustainable development path. The figure was arrived at by estimating the cost of addressing sector and resource specific environment and development problems.

Challenges  

At the national level, the other apparent funding mechanism is budgetary support by developing countries for environment protection programmes. However, public expenditure has its limitations. Developing countries, with their limited domestic savings rely on external finances to supplement their resources and overcome budgetary constraints. With the far from favorable trends in external financing, the ability of developing countries to undertake large-scale public expenditure in this field is doubtful. Debt servicing commitments further aggravate the situation. Besides, many developing countries are undertaking economic policy reform, especially fiscal consolidation, and are faced with even more stringent budgetary constraints. At best, only a modest reallocation of resources is feasible.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

Information related to financing sustainable development is made available to potential users through: http://finmin.nic.in .

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing   

India has always emphasized the importance of public investment for sustainable development by providing fiscal concessions and incentives. Since energy-efficient technologies and non-conventional energy technologies directly improve the protection level of the atmosphere, several tax concessions, 100% depreciation allowance, and investment subsidies have been made widely available. Investments under the National River Action Plan on Control of River Pollution arising from both municipal and non-municipal waste also produce a major impact on marine and ocean-based resources since they control land-based sources of marine pollution in India. However, additional resources need to be made available through external sources for implementing various programmes and activities listed in Agenda 21.

Cooperation  

The goal of Agenda 21 was in part to raise additional external funds for sustainable development activities by increasing bilateral and multilateral Official Development Assistance (ODA) to 0.7% of GNP from donor countries. The fact remains that many of the developing countries are experiencing a net outflow of resources. The average ODA in the post-Rio period 1993-95 has been lower than in the period 1990-92, both in absolute terms and as a percentage of GNP. In fact, ODA at an average of 0.29% of GNP in the 1993-95 period has been the lowest in decades. The Global Environment Facility (GEF) is the only new funding mechanism made available to meet the additional needs identified in Agenda 21. The amount of about US $ 2 billion from GEF, besides the Montreal Protocol Multilateral Fund to tackle ozone depletion, is almost negligible and has fallen short of even the most conservative estimates of the requirements for implementing Agenda 21.

While outlining the estimates of financing needs, Agenda 21 fails to identify the mechanisms to ensure their delivery. Discussions at the earlier meetings of the Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD), and in the Finance Working Group, have developed a very useful framework for identifying new and innovative sources of funding, including a sectoral approach to mobilizing funds from within the economy and from external sources. Several of the alternatives highlight the important links between the creation of incentives for the reduction of pollution and wasteful consumption in the North and potential financing for sustainable development in the South. More research work on the formulation of such policy options needs to be undertaken to consolidate the progress achieved and to address the unresolved issues.

* * * 

This information was provided by the government of India to the 5th and 8th Sessions of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: February 2000.

For the 1997 Economic Survey, click here.
For information on participating States in the Global Environment Facility, click here:
For information about issues and projects in Asia and the Pacific from the World Bank, click here:

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TECHNOLOGY

Transfer of Environmentally-Sound Technology

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The facilitating role of Government has been increasing through, for example, the identification of and support for the development of environmentally sound technologies such as chlorofluorcarbon (CFC) alternatives, clean coal technologies, energy efficient technologies, and others. In the field of environmentally sound technologies, a number of research and development projects have been identified for support. The Ninth Five Year Plan projections have stressed the initiation of measures for reducing the energy intensity in different sectors through changes in technology and industrial processes. A critical mass of R&D capacity is crucial for effective dissemination of environmentally sound technologies and their generation locally. Areas which need attention are access to information on state of art technologies, a framework for dissemination of information on the source and availability of environmentally sound technologies, development of guidelines for the transfer of technologies, and training of personnel to undertake technology assessment for the management of such technologies.

Technology upgrading requires that Indian enterprises of all types have information on relevant technologies in international markets and within the country. Many countries have well-developed systems, computerized on-line technology information and dissemination services, often backed by consultancy and financial assistance to enable small and medium enterprises to find out, test, and implement new technologies.

Indian technology policies are undergoing significant changes, and on the whole have improved greatly in recent years. They are not, however, ideal. A coherent technology strategy in India must address a number of interconnected elements in the incentive regime, and the relevant markets and institutions. Technology development generally requires the setting up of clusters of industries that can share information and skills, as in science parks or dedicated industrial estates. Some such facilities exist in India, but their efficacy and functioning need to be strengthened.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

In order to strengthen the technological capabilities of Indian industries, both for meeting National needs and for global competitiveness, a number of new initiatives have been launched. A Technology Development Board was established in 1996 with a mandate to facilitate development of new technologies, and the assimilation and adaptation of imported technologies by providing catalytic support to enable industries and R&D institutions to work in partnership with each other. Matching grants to R&D institutions showing commercial earnings through technology services were also introduced in 1996 and will be continued and broadened. Already, a long-term perspective called Technology Vision for India 2020 has been prepared which could form the basis of technology development programmes.

Status   

In India, there is considerable technological activity in a wide spectrum of firms. What is most impressive is the number of small and medium sized enterprises that are investing in new technology-based ventures, and often striking out in world market as exporters. However, the rest of the industrial sector still needs to invest in technology upgrading. The experience of many developing and industrialized countries suggests that a rapid acceleration of industrial technology development calls for a deliberate 'strategy', in the sense that it requires the government to coordinate and guide an essentially market-driven process.

Technology development calls for both general and specific forms of human capital, and emerging technologies are highly skill intensive in both technical and managerial terms. While India is endowed at present with large amounts of high-level human capital, investments in the creation of new skills (as measured by enrolment levels in technical subjects at all levels) are low. In addition, firm investments in training are highly variable, with large segments of industry investing very little in training. The small and medium enterprise (SME) sector in particular suffers from very low levels of skill, while industrial training institutes are often unresponsive to their needs. R&D in Indian industry has been rising, but the overall level is still low and over three-quarters of the research effort originates from the public sector. The Government is undertaking an analysis of current technological trends in industry in order to formulate appropriate policies to encourage R&D.

India has a large infrastructure of technology support institutions, some of which are undergoing reform to make them more relevant to industrial needs. A number of universities, especially the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), are increasingly interacting with industry on technological matters, while others are outside this circle.

Environmentally sound technologies are essential to achieving sustained economic growth and sustainable development. They encompass a total system which includes know-how, procedures, goods, and services. Agenda 21 emphasizes the need for access to and the transfer of environmentally sound technologies to developing countries on favourable and preferential terms as mutually agreed. This would take into account the need to protect Intellectual Property Rights as well as the special needs of developing countries for the implementation of Agenda 21.The implementation of the commitments on the transfer of environmentally sound technologies and technical know-how has been disappointing.

Issues of natural resource conservation and agricultural growth cannot be effectively tackled in the absence of an appropriate technological base. In addition, technology is essential for increasing the competitiveness of the Indian economy in international markets. Indigenous development of technology is therefore of the highest importance and deliberate planned steps need to be taken to increase National technology self-sufficiency. Rapid technical progress is altering fundamentally the skills, knowledge, infrastructure, and institutions needed for the efficient production and delivery of goods and services. So broad and far-reaching are current technological developments that many see the emergence of another industrial revolution driven by a new technological "paradigm". This paradigm involves, not only new technologies and skills in the traditional sense, but also different work methods, management techniques, and organizational relations within firms. As new transport and communications technologies shrink international 'economic space', it also implies a significant reordering of comparative advantage, and trade and investment relations between countries.

Challenges  

There is a need to strengthen Technology Foresight Programmes to analyze the implications of emerging technologies, domestic strengths and weaknesses, and target future technologies for local development.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

In India, the Department of Science and Technology has played an important role in terms of institutional support for building National strengths in scientific fields, and technology assessment and forecasting. A number of technology status reports on energy efficiency, environmentally sound technologies for pollution control, and many other areas have been published.

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing   

No information is available

Cooperation

No information is available

* * * 

 

  This information was provided by the Government of India to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

 

Biotechnology

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement   

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

In India, the Department of Biotechnology has constituted 16 Task Forces for the generation of R&D projects for the development of biotechnologies/techniques/ processes, the perfection of techniques/technologies developed, and their field evaluation and transfer to industries for commercialization. This is to benefit the country in general and the affected population in particular. These Task Forces are: aquaculture and marine biotechnology; animal biotechnology; biological control of plant pests, diseases, and weeds; biotech process engineering and industrial biotechnology; basic research in biotechnology; biotechnology based programme for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes population, and weaker sections of society; biofertilizer; crop biotechnology and plant molecular biology; environment and conservation biotechnology; food biotechnology; human genetics; medical biotechnology; microbial biotechnology; medicinal and aromatic plants biotechnology; plant tissue culture; and sericulture biotechnology.

These Task Forces consist of experts in the respective areas from different parts of the country. All the Task Forces have identified the needed thrust areas in the Indian context. Based on the recommendations of the Task Forces, the Department has supported research in the following areas: a) development of stress resistant plant species (crop species, forest trees, and medicinally important plant species) for higher yields with less inputs; b) transgenic crop plants for higher yields, pest management, reduction in toxin contents in some crop varieties, etc.; c) development of biological pesticides using biotechnological tools to bring down the pollution load of chemical pesticides; d) development of more efficient bio-fertilizers which will be economical to farmers compared to chemical fertilizers, and ultimately bring down pollution load of chemical fertilizers; e) development of new immunodiagnostic tools for detection of communicable diseases and certain physiological states, such as early detection of pregnancy, etc.; f) development of new/recombinant vaccines for the control of different diseases; g) development of new strains for improved production of antibiotics using/strengthening the existing infrastructure; h) development of highly efficient strains for the treatment of waste waters (domestic as well as industrial) and conversion of wastes and agro-residues into useful chemicals for industrial applications; i) development of ELISA, phase conjugate reflectivity (PCR) techniques, and DNA probes for the detection of enteric pathogens in drinking water so as to avoid epidemic outbreaks by quick corrective measures to be taken immediately after identification of the enteric pathogens; j) development of cleaner technologies using the biotechnological tools; k) development of biosensors for the detection of xenobiotics in the environment; l) conservation of endangered/threatened plant species which are at the verge of extinction and are of economically/medicinally importance using biotechnological tools, specifically for the development of protocols for ex situ conservation, which would be taken up by the Ministry of Environment and Forests for in situ conservation; m) establishment of gene banks in different parts of the country; n) development of high-yielding technology packages for aquaculture including feed development, breeding and seed production, and bioactive compound, health, development of spawning agents, etc.; and o) development of embryo transfer techniques, animal feed for high milching cattle and for development of vaccines and diagnostics for different diseases in the area of animal biotechnology.

The purpose of gene banks is for the preparation of an inventory of important species, preservation of genetic resources, and to optimize their uses. There is also a provision for networking of gene banks on a regional or inter-regional basis. Under this programme, banks have been established at: the National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources (NBPGR), the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi; the Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CIMAP), Lucknow; and the Tropical Botanical Garden and Research Institute (TBGRI), Thiruvanathapuram .

In collaboration with the Ministry of Environment and Forests, the Department has taken the lead responsibility for the following three activities in the context of the Convention on Biological Diversity: a) development of modalities for access to and transfer of technology to identify the institutions and develop measures for receiving such technologies and utilizing them; b) development of modalities for priority access to biotechnology results and benefits on mutually agreed terms; and c) formulation of procedures for advanced informed agreements on the safe transfer of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) beyond the National jurisdiction.

The recombinant DNA (rDNA) technology heralded new opportunities for beneficial applications in agriculture, animal and human health, industry, and environment. It has also given rise to concern over possible unknown hazards from bridging the natural species barrier and the uncertain effects of new organisms on environmental and public health. In order to have effective and safe release programmes, it is necessary to have biosafety and regulatory arrangements in biotechnology. Realizing the immediate needs for these arrangements, the Department of Biotechnology has prepared the Recombinant DNA Safety Guidelines and Regulations. These guidelines cover the areas of research involving: a) GMOs/living modified organisms (LMOs); b) genetic transformation of plants and animals; c) rDNA technology in vaccines and bioactive molecule development; and d) large scale production and deliberate/accidental release of organisms, plants, animals, and products derived from rDNA technologies.

Status   

No information is available

Challenges  

No information is available

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

No information is available

Research and Technologies  

No information is available

Financing  

No information is available

Cooperation  

No information is available

* * * 

This information was provided by the Government of India to the 5th session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

Click here for India's biotechnology information system.
Click here to link to the Biosafety Information Network and Advisory Service (BINAS), a service of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), which monitors global developments in regulatory issues in biotechnology.
Click here to go to the Web Site of UNEP's International Register on Biosafety.
Click here for the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Biosafety WebPages

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INDUSTRY

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies  

No information is available

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

In order to strengthen the technological capabilities of Indian industries, both for meeting National needs and for global competitiveness, a number of new initiatives have been launched. A Technology Development Board was established in 1996 with a mandate to facilitate development of new technologies, and the assimilation and adaptation of imported technologies by providing catalytic support to enable industries and R&D institutions to work in partnership with each other. Matching grants to R&D institutions showing commercial earnings through technology services were also introduced in 1996 and will be continued and broadened. Already, a long-term perspective called Technology Vision for India 2020 has been prepared which could form the basis of technology development programmes.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available

Programmes and Projects   

Adoption of Cleaner Production Technologies and formation of Waste Minimization Circles are being encouraged to minimize environmental pollution. Under the World Bank aided Industrial Pollution Control Project, technical and financial assistance is provided for establishing Common Effluent Treatment Plants (CETPs) in clusters of small scale industrial units at, for example, Mumbai, Surat, and Chennai. An Eco-Mark scheme has been launched to certify various products of industries which fulfil the prescribed standards of environment-friendly production, packaging, and waste disposal.

Status   

The expanded scope for specializing in areas of comparative advantage is manifest in the improved growth performance of the economy. Furthermore, while exports have vigorously responded to the removal of the anti-export bias of a protectionist environment, domestic industry appears to have been stimulated by the expanded availability of imports and capital goods, and the challenge of competing in the international market place. The positive response of Indian industry to deregulation is amply demonstrated by the capital goods sector. The capital goods industry which witnessed a negative growth of 12.8% in 1991-92, registered an average growth of about 23% during 1994-96.

Major industrial cities along the coastline like Mumbai, Surat, Cochin, Chennai, Visakhapatnam discharge approximately 0-7 x 109 cubic metres of waste. There are 1,551 industries located along the coastline of the country and all the major ones treat their effluents before disposal. There are innumerable small and medium scale industries which dispose untreated waste into creeks as well as sewage. Several tanneries located in Calcutta and near Chennai have been strongly recommended for closure in cases where they do not install treatment plants within the stipulated period specified by the Apex Court of the country.

Challenges  

No information is available

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

No information is available

Information   

No information is available

Research and Technologies   

No information is available

Financing   

No information is available

Cooperation

No information is available 

 

* * * 

This information was provided by the Government of India to the 5th session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: 1 April 1997.

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TRANSPORT

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

The various Ministries/agencies involved are those of:

·        Surface Transport

·        Heavy Industry

·        Civil Aviation

·        Shipping, Railways

·        Urban Development

·        Petroleum

·        Environment and Forests

·        Planning Commission for formulating plans and policy.

The Planning Commission has been entrusted with task of  formulating the  Integrated Transport policy for the country.  As per present system, amendment in existing Acts/notifications are carried out by the administering Ministry /Department in consultation with the other concerned Department/Ministries.

Planning Commission is finalizing an Integrated Transport Policy which would focus on coordinated and integrated development of all modes of transport.

The Ministry of Surface Transport deals with Indian Motor Vehicle Act, 1988 and Central Motor Vehicle Rules, 1989.  Enforcement of these is done by the concerned State authorities.  States play an active role in the decisions involving transport and their inputs are considered at all levels of decision making

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

To mitigate pollution problems in Indian cities, more stringent norms for vehicular emissions have been notified under the Central Motor Vehicle Rules which came into effect in April 1996.

Ministry of Surface Transport deals with Indian Motor Vehicle Act, 1988 and Central Motor Vehicle Rules, 1989. The Motor Vehicle Act (Amendment), 2000 legislated the use of environment-friendly fuel like Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) as auto-fuels.  In addition, Bharat Stage-I norms, which are akin to Euro-I norms, have been introduced all over the country w.e.f. 1.4.2000.  Further, Bharat Stage-II norms, which envisage a Sulphur content of 0.05% as against higher quantities under Bharat Stage-I, have been introduced in NCR of  Delhi, and these are being introduced in the other three metropolitan cities namely Mumbai, Calcutta and Chennai in a phased manner. For Railways the  Railways Act 1989 is administered by the ministry of Railways. 

Bharat Stage-I norms have been introduced all over the country w.e.f. 1.4.2000. This norm is being progressively tightened and Bharat Stage-II norms which envisage a Sulphur content of 0.05% maximum for petrol and diesel both, have been introduced in Delhi from 1.4.2000 and in Mumbai from 1.1.2001 and in both Chennai and Calcutta from 1.7.2001 . The ministry of  Finance provides tax incentives for popularizing use of environment-friendly fuel like CNG, LPG etc.  Chairman, Central Pollution Control Board is chairing an inter-Ministerial Committee to specify the road map for future emission norms for the country.  The report is expected by March 2001. 

Ministry of Railways has its own codal procedures, safety norms, rules and regulations for all aspects of Railway working including Safety, Operations and Maintenance of assets.

In August 2000, use of environmental-friendly fuel like CNG, LPG, fuel cell etc for automotive purposes has been legislated.  Relevant rules are under formulation in respect of LPG.  In case of CNG, there are existing guidelines.  In addition, Ministry/o Petroleum as well as Department of Explosives are also amending their respective regulation in this regard.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

A Task Force has been set up in the Planning Commission for the development of an integrated transport policy.  The policy would focus on integrated development of transport sector, interconnectivity of various modes of transport, financing plans of all modes of transport and other issues. 

To address the diverse issues facing the transport sector the need  for a comprehensive policy package has been recognized Government has drawn a plan  to strengthen the Indian railway system in its reach and capacity so that it effectively links the distant parts of the country, helps to develop the economic potential of the remote areas and carries the bulk of the nation’s long or medium haul traffic.  Similarly, the road network is being  expanded and strengthened to improve accessibility of the hinterland, especially the rural areas and to facilitate the integration of the isolated parts of the country.  The length and breadth and the quality of the highways has improved greatly as part of a national grid to provide for speedy, efficient and economical carriage of goods and people. 

Government is making  efforts to regulate road transport  for better energy efficiency and pollution control, and to make  the mass transport network  viable through a rational tariff policy and a refurbishment of the fleet.  The capacity of the ports in terms of their berths and cargo handling equipment are being  improved to cater to the growing requirements of the overseas trade.  The shipping industry  needs to be enabled to carry higher shares of the sea-borne trade in indigenous bottoms.  The civil aviation sector is being expanded to increase its carrying capacity for passengers and cargo, improve the ground handling facilities and provide connectivity to areas like the North-East.  Conditions need to be created to ensure full utilization of the capacities created in the public sector with large investments made in the past.

In the metropolitan areas, on the one hand, the provision of mass public transport is being increased through a mix of environment-friendly modes - specially designed buses, light rail and metro and on the other, demand management is being ensured through price-based as well as non-price-based measures so as to minimize the dependence on personalized transport. Similarly, non-mechanized transport should be accorded its rightful niche in a well-conceived transport network.

To bring about this sea change in the transport scene, many policy initiatives will be needed, each backed by adequate investment and complemented by suitable policy changes in other sectors.  A Task Force on Infrastructure has been constituted with the aim of attracting investments to specific projects.

 

TASK FORCE ON INFRASTRUCTURE

· A Task Force on Infrastructure was constituted under the Chairmanship of Dy. Chairman, Planning Commission comprising both Government and industry representatives with the aim of attracting investment to specific projects of national and regional importance, and ensuring their timely completion. 

Initially, the Task Force will deal with the following projects focusing on innovative methods for financing them.

· Six lane expressway of 7,000 km length, having North-South and East-West corridors.

· Four-laning of National Highways, and

· Five international airports.

The terms of reference of the Task Force include:

· determining the routes for Expressways and National Highways, and establishing technical parameters thereof;

· identifying and recommending locations for the airports;

· establishing benchmarks and criteria for the airports;

· recommending financing options for Expressways, highways and airports;

· recommending criteria for competitive bidding and selection of (EPC) contractors;

· recommending measures as are necessary for timely completion of projects including governmental clearances; and

· overseeing and monitoring timely implementation of the projects.

The Task Force will also formulate an Integrated National Transport Policy to strengthen the transport infrastructure in the country.  It would also recommend steps that can significantly improve and foster reforms in those key segments of the economy.

 

The following are the Strategic Objectives of the Civil Aviation policy of India

 

The objectives of this policy are the creation and continued facilitation of a competitive and service-oriented civil aviation environment in which:

i.                     the interests of the users of civil aviation are the guiding force behind all decisions, systems and arrangements,

ii.                   safe, efficient , reliable and widespread quality air transport services are provided at reasonable prices,

iii.                  there exists a well-defined regulatory framework catering to changing needs and circumstances,

iv.                 all players and stakeholders are assured of a level playing field;

v.                   private participation is encouraged and opportunities created for investors to realize adequate returns on their investments;

vi.                 recognizing that aviation today is an important element of infrastructure, rapid upgradation of airport infrastructure with priority to the busiest airports and those handling international flights;

vii.                recognizing that transportation of air cargo is vital to the economic growth of the country, creation and development of specific infrastructure for air transportation of cargo and express cargo is encouraged,

viii.              "airline operations and acquisition of aircraft" is conferred "infrastructure" status for overall growth of the civil aviation sector in the country

ix.                 domestic and international aviation in the country are encouraged to grow at par with world aviation industry;

x.                   inter-linkages with other modes of transport are encouraged and stimulated;

xi.                 trade, tourism and overall economic activity and growth is encouraged;

xii.                international cooperation in aviation and development in tune with international trends and best practices, consistent with airspace sovereignty is promoted;

xiii.              indigenous development of aircraft, components and aviation products is encouraged,

xiv.              Security of civil aviation operations is ensured through appropriate systems, policies, and practices, and

xv.               Effective systems are put in place for timely crisis and disaster management, including investigation of incidents/accidents.

 

 

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

India is a democratic country and the elected representatives of the people are invariably connected with the decision-making process.  Their participation at the National level is through Parliamentary proceedings, meeting of the various Committees of Parliament as well as individual initiatives.  States and local Governments have corresponding arrangements.  The inputs of various organized Bodies/Associations are also considered during policy formulation.            Parliamentary Committees such as the  Standing Committee, Railway Convention Committee hold regular meetings with the Railway Administration regarding overall functioning of the Railways.  Representations, suggestions and recommendations from various quarters such as the  Passenger Amenities Committee, Zonal Rail Users Committee and Trade Associations like the CII, ASSOCHAM and FICCI are also considered.

In the urban areas, lack of adequate mass transport, complete absence of demand management and policy distortions in the area of fuel pricing and bank finance have resulted in an explosion of personalized transport comprising mainly  scooters and cars.  This has contributed to high levels of pollution and alarming rates of accidents.  On the other side, a large number of villages lack a reliable all-weather connection with nearby markets and towns. Certain environment-friendly and socially cost-effective means of transport like coastal shipping, inland water transport and non-mechanized transport, human or animal-powered have remained undeveloped.

Planning for, and execution of Railway Projects is done in an integrated and need-based manner keeping a national perspective in view.  Geographical boundaries do not form a criterion for determining projects.

The Union Government and number of State Governments have approved the participation of private sector for construction, maintenance and operation of Highways on a BOT basis. A number of projects are under implementation. Government is encouraging and framing laws and regulations for promotion of private sector participation in various areas of transport including roads and civil aviation.

Programmes and Projects   

Efforts are being made to make the roads more friendly for road users through a series of measures like widening of roads, construction of by-passes, improvements of road geometric providing paved shoulders, strengthening weak pavements, replacement of level crossings by road over bridges, retro reflective road signs, provision of wayside amenities on high traffic density corridors and creation of awareness amongst various categories of road users.

Traffic efficiency of the Railways is being achieved through the following programmes:

Planning Commission has constituted a high level working group to look into various aspects of road safety.  In this respect, the following research project is sanctioned by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways is in progress and the draft final report is under examination. Besides the Indian Road Research Institute is working on some projects.

RSDO (Research Designs & Standards Organization) is under the Ministry of Railways, which takes care of the research needs of the Indian Railways through Mission Programmes.  Some of the missions of RDSO include Heavy Haul Operation and  High Speed Trains.

To reduce the use of fossile fuel, the Government has launched a programme for alternative modes of surface transportation.  The programme has demonstrated the use of electrical vehicles in major metro cities with encouraging signs of interest from a number of private companies who would like to manufacture such vehicles.  A new programme to replace petroleum by methanol has also been launched by the government.

Status   

The domestic funding of the transport sector can be either public or private.  Historically, the investments in the transport sector, particularly in the rail, road, ports and airports infrastructure, have been made by the State mainly because of the large volume of resources required, long gestation periods, uncertain returns and various externalities, both positive and negative, associated with this infrastructure.  However, the galloping resource requirements and the concern for managerial efficiency and consumer responsiveness have led to the active involvement of the private sector in infrastructure services in recent times.  

In India too, considerable private investment exists in trucking, inter-city bus travel, shipping and lately in airline services.  By and large, mobile transport units like trucks, buses, wagons, ships and aircrafts lend themselves easily to private investment while the large fixed infrastructure has remained in the domain of public investment.  However, statutory and administrative initiatives have been taken in recent years to involve private capital in the expansion and strengthening of infrastructure in the railways, road, shipping and the airports. Private participation can take many forms like full or joint ownership management contract, leasing, and concessions like BOT.  However, looking at the state of Indian capital markets, particularly for long-term debt, it may not be realistic to expect any large-scale contribution from the private sector in the transport area though evolution of a well-developed policy and regulatory framework can result in gradual inflows from the private sector.

The scope for private sector participation in providing rail infrastructure and services is limited.  Attempts have, however, been made to involve the private sector in augmenting the capacity of the railway system in a number of ways.  The “Own Your Wagon Scheme (OYWS)” was launched in the Eighth Plan in order to tap the private sector resources for augmenting the supply of wagons.  The private sector firms would procure the wagons, own them and lease them to the railways with or without preferential claim on allotment of capacity for the firms’ own use.  With the revision made in the scheme in February 1994, the response has been encouraging during the period 1994-95 to 1996-97.  The actual procurement under the scheme has been of the order of 9000 i.e. about 77% of the target. 

It has also been decided to undertake some of the projects through investment by the private sector under the  “Build-Own-Lease-Transfer (BOLT)” scheme the private entrepreneurs and the financial institutions would whereby build/manufacture/finance the assets for lease to the railways.  It is proposed to offer projects like gauge conversion, supply of rolling stock, electrification, doubling of existing single lines, and telecom projects under this scheme.  However, the experience during the Eighth Plan has underlined the difficulty of enlisting private participation in such infrastructural areas on affordable terms.  In order to attract larger private sector investment in the Railways ,maximize the efficiency and benefit from  the synergistic effect of the private and public sector investment, restructuring of Indian Railways becomes inevitable.

Various fiscal and tax concessions have been offered for undertaking road projects on a BOT basis.  The Government has also assured help in land acquisition, environmental clearances and simplification of procedures.  Some State Governments have also taken significant steps like the setting up of dedicated organisations on the pattern of NHAI to promote road development, financed through user charges on BOT or State toll basis.  Some small stretches of roads and bypasses have already been commissioned under these arrangements.  The role of this device may become more significant once the policy framework including an independent regulatory system is put in operation and investors are able to overcome their apprehensions with regard to uncertainties of these long-term investments in such infrastructure.  The policy framework is sought to be kept flexible to permit allocation of risks on an acceptable basis and sharing of risks between the Government and the private sector through grants or equity sharing.

Projects relating to bypasses, bridges and 4 laning of existing sections of National Highways are financially viable and bankable would be taken up through private sector participation.  11 projects involving an investment of about $120 mn have already been initiated under the BOT Schemes.  As stated already, viable sections o the four major corridors are also proposed to be taken up under the  BOT scheme for four laning.  NHAI has been given considerable flexibility to financially collaborate with the private or the public sectors and projects which are not viable on the basis of traffic density will be provided equity/loan support from NHAI.  Several other ROB/Bypass projects have been proposed under the BOT scheme through State Governments.  In addition to the projects taken up through private sector participation under the programme of NHAI, some investment would be available under privatization programme for non-NHAI roads.  Thus, given the risk profile of toll road projects and the relative under development of Indian long-term debt market, private investment in roads is expected to be modest.  Therefore, the budgetary support will continue to have a large and crucial role to play in road development .

An overview of  availability / accessibility is as following:

RAILWAYS

The railways in India provide the principal mode of transportation for freight and passengers. It brings together people from the farthest corners of the country and makes possible the conduct of business, sightseeing, pilgrimage and education. Indian Railways have been a great integrating force during the last hundred years. It has bound the economic life of the country and helped in accelerating the development of industry and agriculture. From a very modest beginning in 1853, when the first train steamed off from Bombay to Thane, a distance of 34 km, Indian Railways have grown into a vast network of 7,068 stations spread over a route length of 62,495 km with a fleet of 7,206 locomotives, 34,728 passenger service vehicles, 5,302 other coaching vehicles and 2,63,981 wagons as on 31 March 1998. The growth of Indian Railways in the 145 years of its existence is thus phenomenal. It has played a vital role in the economic, industrial and social development of the country. The network runs multigauge operations extending over 62,495 route kilometre. The gauge-wise route and track lengths of the system as on 31 March 1998 were as under:

Gauge Route Running Total km track

 

Broad Gauge (1,676 mm) 43,083 60,550 83,073

Metre Gauge (1,000 mm) 15,804 16,682 20,343

Narrow Gauge (762 mm and 610 mm) 3,608 3,676 4,027

Total 62,495 80,908 1,07,445

About 22 per cent of the route kilometre, 30 per cent of running track kilometre and 29 per cent of total track kilometre is electrified. The network is divided into nine zones and further sub-divided into divisions.

ROADS

India has one of the largest road networks in the world. The country’s total road length as on 31 March 1996 stood at 33,19,644 km. The Ninth Plan laid emphasis on a coordinated and balanced development of road network in the country under (i) primary road system covering state highways; (ii) secondary and feeder road system covering state highways and major district roads; and (iii) rural roads including village roads and other district roads.

Substantial outlays were proposed for road development in the rural and tribal areas. During the Eighth Plan, $400 million was spent on Central sector roads and $3000 million spent on state sector roads. Under the Ninth Plan, the allocation is $2000  million for the Central sector roads programme.

NATIONAL HIGHWAYS

The Central government is responsible for the national highway system totaling a length of 51,966 km. In 1947 approximately 2,500 km of missing road links and thousands of culverts and bridges, which did not exist, were required to be constructed to have an integrated and continuous network.           

There was an increase in missing road links with addition of new roads to the national highway system in later years. Up to 31 March 1999, road links including diversions realignments, and constructed totaled 4,717 km, widening and strengthening single lane section to double lane carriage was done in 25,685 km, widening to four-lane completed in 845 km, strengthening of weak two-lane pavement has been done in 14,790 km. In addition 560 major bridges and 3,078 minor bridges were also completed. During Eighth Five Year Plan a sum of about $ 800 million has been spent on development of national highways. $350 million and $340 million  have been spent on National Highways during 1997-98 and 1998-99 respectively and budget allocation of $510 million has been made for the year 1999-2000 . Though the national highways constitute only two per cent of the total road length, they carry nearly 40 per cent of road traffic.

There are altogether nine on-going external loans for the improvement of National Highways, comprising one loan (US dollar 306 million) from the World Bank, three loans (total US dollar 672 million) from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and five loans (total Japanese Yen 36,915 million approximately equivalent US dollar 450 million) from Overseas Economic Cooperation Fund (OECF), Japan. The World Bank loan includes six National Highways sub-projects in the States of Punjab, Haryana, Orissa, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal and one state highway project for reconstruction of bridges in Orissa. All the sub-projects are in progress. The first ADB loan (US dollar 177 million) provides for development of national highways in three States, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh and state highways in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. All works have been substantially completed by March 1998. The second ADB loan (US dollar 250 million) provides for improvement in Karnataka, Kerala, Rajasthan and of state roads in Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. The NH projects in Andhra Pradesh and Orissa have been substantially completed. Remaining projects are in progress. The third ADB loan covers national highways projects in Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Bihar and West Bengal. All the projects are in progress. The project for improvement of Mathura-Agra Section of NH-2 in Uttar Pradesh, under one of the five loans of OECF is in progress. Out of the remaining four loans, the procurement process has been recently completed for two, and is in progress for the other two.

STATE SECTOR ROADS

State highways and district rural roads are the responsibility of State governments and are maintained by various agencies in States and union territories. Roads are being developed in rural areas under the Minimum Needs Programme (MNP). The objective of it being to link all villages with a population of 1,500 with all-weather roads. The Government also assists in development of certain selected roads in States. The total length of roads in India stood at 33,19,644 km (both surfaced and non-surfaced roads) in March 1996.

INLAND WATER TRANSPORT

India has got about 14,500 km of navigable waterways which comprises rivers, canals, backwaters and creeks. At present, however, a length of 3,700 km of major rivers is navigable by mechanized crafts but the length actually utilized is only about 2,000 km. As regards canals, out of 4,300 km of navigation canals, only 900 km is suitable for navigation by mechanized crafts. About 1.60 million tones of cargo is being moved by Inland Water Transport (IWT), a fuel efficient and environment friendly mode. IWT is also known for higher employment generation potential. Its operations are currently restricted to a few stretches in the Ganga-Bhagirathi, Hooghly rivers, the Brahmaputra, the Barak river, the rivers in Goa, the backwaters in Kerala and in the deltaic regions of the Godavari-Krishna rivers. Besides the organized operations by mechanized vessels, country boats of various capacities also operate in various rivers and canals.

CIVIL AVIATION

The civil aviation sector has three main functional divisions—regulatory, infrastructural and operational. On the operational side, Indian Airlines, Alliance Air (Subsidiary of Indian Airlines), private scheduled airlines and air taxis provide domestic air services and Air India provides international air services. Pawan Hans renamed Pawan Hans Helicopters Limited provides helicopters services to ONGC in its offshore operations and to inaccessible areas or difficult terrains. Indian Airlines operations also extend to the neighboring countries, South East Asia and Middle East. India has been a member of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and is also on the Council of ICAO since its inception.

The Government has ended the monopoly of Indian Airlines and Air India on the scheduled operations by repealing the Air Corporation Act, 1953. There are at present three private scheduled airlines operating on the domestic network rendering the passengers a wider choice of flights. Apart from this 37 Air Taxi Operators are providing non-scheduled air services. A new policy on domestic air transport service was approved in April 1997 according to which barriers to entry and exit from this sector have been removed; choice of aircraft type and size has been left to the operator; entry of serious entrepreneurs only has been ensured; and equity from foreign airlines, directly or indirectly, in this sector has been prohibited. The existing policy on air taxi services providing for a route dispersal plan to ensure operation of a minimum number of services in the North-Eastern Region, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep and Jammu and Kashmir has been retained.

The Airports Authority of India (AAI)  manages 92 civil airports including five international airports, 28 civil enclaves at defense airfields. It manages the entire Indian air  space

Railway Energy Consumption  (1998-99)

All gauges

Electric            602 3918 K.Whs.

Diesel               1900 804 Kilo litres

To reduce emissions from vehicles and to increase the engine efficiency , a number of steps have been taken in India . Apart from introduction of unleaded gasoline , the sulphur content of Gasoline has been reduced from 0.2% to 0.1% wt. in the entire country with effect from 1.4.2000. 0.05% wt sulphur Gasoline is being supplied in NCR , Delhi wef 1.4.2000 and other metros with effect from 1.10.2000.

Benzene content limit in Gasoline has been introduced from 1.4.2000 as 3% maximum  in metros and 5% max in rest of the country. The same is further reduced to 1% max in Mumbai &NCT, Delhi with effect from 1.10.2000 and 1.11.2000 respectively . Supply of 1% Benzene gasoline is planned in NCR , Delhi with effect from 31.3.2001.

To reduce the emission of  Sulphur Dioxide from diesel vehicle , sulphur content of high speed diesel(HSD) has been reduced from 1%wt to less than 0.5%wt from 1.4.1996 in four metros and Taj trapezium zone . Sulphur content in HSD was further reduced in the Taj trapezeum and Delhi to 0.25% wt with effect from  1.9.1996 and 15.8.1997 respectively and the same is implemented in all four metros i.e. Delhi, Kolkatta , Mumbai and Chennai from1.4.1998.With effect from 1.1.2000 0.25% wt S HSD is being supplied in entire country. Further 'S' content is reduced to 0.05% wt in Delhi & Mumbai w.e.f 1.4.2000 & 1.10.2000 respectively and Kolkatta &Chennai wef 1.1.2001.

In  addition to the sulphur content , other important parameters of HSD like Cetane number and distillation specifications have also been improved wit effect from 1.4.2000. Apart from the above , there is proposal to reduce sulphur content of both Gasoline and HSD to 50ppm in future.

In order to encourage use of eco friendly alternate fuel , a programme has been launched for use of Ethanol Blended Gasoline . For this purpose two pilot plant projects , one each at Maharashtra and U.P have been taken up. Lead-free petrol has been inducted all over the country.

About 65 to 70% of the air pollution in metropolitan cities (Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkatta) are attributed to vehicular emissions.  The vehicular exhaust emissions include particulate matter, carbon monoxide, oxides of nitrogen,  and sulphur dioxide. 

In accordance with the ‘White Paper on Pollution in Delhi with an Action Plan’ two wheelers account for about two-thirds of the total vehicular population in Delhi.  Because of inherent drawbacks in the design of two-stroke engines, two-wheelers emit about 20-40 percent of the fuel un-burnt/partially burnt.  Mass emission standards known as India 2000 norms akin to Euro-I norms are effective for all categories of vehicles manufactured with effect from 1.4.2000 in the entire country.  Further, Bharat Stage-II emission standards akin to Euro II norms are  effective from 1.4.2000 for four wheeled private (non-commercial) vehicles in Delhi and the same is effective in Mumbai from 1.1.2001 and in Chennai and Kolkatta  from 1.7.2001 in accordance with the requisite notifications issued by  the Ministry Of Surface Transport. 

According to the ambient air quality data, there is an improvement in the air quality during the current year  as compared to previous years  in Delhi.

Challenges  

India's is an integrated approach that seeks to improve all the modes -land, sea and air. The surface transport sector requires most attention.        

Financial resources, terrain, climate  and population pressure are some of the constraints. These issues are beginning to get addressed with the economy registering healthy growth.

Emissions can be reduced through supply of fuel of appropriate specifications, use of appropriate technology in vehicular engines and better inspection and maintenance of on-road vehicles. As regards technology, it  is available in the country and can be introduced in a phased manner corresponding to the availability of appropriate quality of fuel.  As regards inspection/maintenance, in case of commercial vehicles annual fitness tests are mandatory after the first two years.  For non-commercial vehicles, the period is 15 years.  The norms of fitness are being progressively tightened.  However, due to a stay order granted by the Calcutta High Court, the involvement of private sector in inspection of vehicles is not allowed.  This Ministry of Environment and Forests and the Central Pollution Control Board has gone in appeal to the Supreme Court for a vacation of the  stay.  Involvement of the private sector for inspection and maintenance is essential for improvement in the ambient air quality through reduction in emissions from on-road vehicles.

Transport and traffic systems that are not managed well put people at risk on the health front. Accidents , holdups and polluting vehicles cause problems that effect society.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

There are several efforts being made by the Government at all levels to increase public awareness. Public awareness on environmental issues is being taken up on mass scale and have been included in the  school curricula.  The issues which are included in the school curricula include topics like steps to  increase forest cover, control soil erosion and reduce GHG emissions etc.  Separately, major campaigns are launched by various schools on environmental issues whereby children try and educate the public on the need to improve the environment.  The State controlled television and radio media very frequently feature programmes giving ways and means on how to contain environmental degradation.

A number of seminars, workshops and training programmes are organized by the Government of India  for creating awareness about renewable energy among different sections of the society including for policy makers, industries and also for users.  These programmes are carried out by State Governments, Academic and R&D institutions, NGOs and  industries.

There are no rules at national level regarding non-motorized transport.  However, local bodies may prescribe certain rules at their level. Government has incentives like seasonal tickets in public transport system. . Car pools have been formed for senior Government officers. The Government has planned efficient mass rapid transport systems for all metros. In Delhi construction is already underway. 

Awareness about road safety is being generated through use of audio-visual media, news media, conducting programmes in schools, campaigns through NGOs as well as distribution of posters, pamphlets, games etc.  In addition, refresher driving training is being provided to drivers of heavy commercial vehicles through various NGOs/institutes.

 Nature study field visits coupled with audio visual presentations are part of school curricula. Children are made to do projects that are designed to learn more about the environment and its relationship with other sectors. There are many issues on environmental protection in the school curricula.

Various programmes of trainings in the country and abroad for training of Highway/Traffic Experts, technical staff are in operation.

Information   

The Ministry of Surface Transport is maintaining the traffic census database for National Highways.  The traffic census is made manually by the respective State Public Work Departments and hard copy of data are forwarded to this Ministry.  This data is then entered into computers and analyzed .

Railways maintain comprehensive data relating to all aspects of their working.  These data are essential tools at the hands of the management in traffic planning, forecasting and fixing targets.

Central Pollution Control Board, a statutory body under the Ministry of Environment and Forests has established 290 ambient air quality monitoring stations covering major cities and urban centres in the country and the data obtained is so processed and evaluated as to recommend necessary mitigative and control measures.

Based on measurements of total suspended particulate matter the air quality in 70 cities during 1997 by Central Pollution Control Board the following categories could be made.

29 cities are critically polluted (above 1.5 times the standard*)

22 cities are highly polluted (between 1 and 1.5 times the standard)

17 cities are moderately polluted (between 0.5 and 1 time the standard); and

2 cities with clean air (0.5 times the standard)

*National Ambient Air Quality Standards            for ambient air quality have been notified under the Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981 and in the Environment  (Protection) Act, 1986.

Research and Technologies   

Research, development and demonstration projects in the field of Electric Vehicles (EV's) under Alternative Fuel for surface transportation programme are also underway. The objective of this programme is to develop non polluting EV's with rechargeable batteries and fuel cells as a power source. CNG buses and other forms of less polluting modes of transport are being given incentives.

The strategy of the government tot develop an integrated transport system aims to improve the efficiency of  the system.

Railways have a well-devised system of working with regard to Traffic management and  increasing safety.  The improvement in traffic indices is being achieved through:

Financing   

The main sources  of funding for building infrastructure like National Highways are the  National budget, cesses collected from sale of petrol and diesel and assistance from external, multilateral and bilateral agencies.  In addition, small amount for funding is from private sector.

Cooperation

 India is a Member country of ESCAP and is a participating country in the Asian Highways System.

Bilateral agreements for the transportation of goods between India & Bangladesh and India & Pakistan exist.  Indian Railways is a member of both UN-ESCAP and UIC (International Union of Railways).  UIC is a voluntary association of World Railways with over 140 members around the world.  UN-ESCAP and UIC are currently engaged in the process of developing Trans-Asian Railway Corridor connecting Europe and Far East countries.  The proposed corridor passes through Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand and Singapore.  Indian Railways  cooperate with both UIC & UN-ESCAP with regard to the Corridor development plan.

India is associated with various international organization in the field of Highways and Management like PIARC, IABSE, IRF.  India is also associated with regional groups like SAARC, BIMSTEC.

Click here for the list of abbreviations

  * * *

  This information was provided by the Government of India to the 5th and 9th Sessions of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last Update: April 2001.

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SUSTAINABLE TOURISM

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies    

The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India is the nodal agency for the formulation of national policies and programmes and for the coordination of activities of various central and state government agencies and the private sector for development of Tourism. However, all the environmental regulations are enforced by the Ministry of Environment and Forests.
State Governments/District Administration/Local Bodies and Councils are responsible for sustainable tourism at the local level. The Forest Departments of the respective State Governments and the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests enforces environmental regulations.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

There are several Acts and laws which ensure sustainable tourism. These are the Wild Life Protection Act 1972, the Environment (Protection) Act 1986, and Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986. These do not set aside any specific area for tourism, but such areas have to be identified by the State Governments and obtain the required approvals/relaxations.


There are established procedure stipulated by the Ministry of Environment and Forests for project clearance and monitoring. There are deterrents in these strategies to check, control or penalise damaging environmental practices on the part of businesses and visitors

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The National Policy on Tourism lays emphasis on sustainable development of tourism. In addition, the Government has brought out a comprehensive Eco Tourism Policy and Guidelines. All issues relevant to sustainable tourism are covered in the policy and guidelines. The Eco tourism policy and guidelines will ensure regulated growth of eco tourism and nature based tourism with its positive impacts of environment protection and community development.
Ecotourism policies and Guidelines have been formulated by the Government in consultation with the industry and are being implemented on a voluntary basis. The environment regulations are mandatory. All the players of the tourism industry including consumers have hailed these codes and have shown sensitiveness to the environment.
The National Policy on tourism lay emphasis on development of ecotourism and preservation of natural and man-made tourist attractions and resources. The policies and guidelines on ecotourism are specifically on the development of sustainable tourism.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

The National Tourism Policy envisages a very big role for all the stakeholders in the decision making process. They are involved in the development of tourism and have contributed substantially in sustainable tourism in the country.

Programmes and Projects   

.The major programmes to promote sustainable tourism include:

Examples of the ways in which eco-tourism and nature-based tourism are being promoted include:

Status   

Tourism is second largest net earning of foreign exchange generating about 3 billion dollars. Tourism generates larger employment opportunities per tourist. The direct employment in the sector during 1997-98 is estimated to be about 9.8 million and total employment due to tourism is 23.1 million.
The foreign tourism arrivals during 1998 were 1.59 million. It has grown up to 2.37 million during 1997. The tourism arrivals growth is expected to be about 8% for the period up to 2000 AD.
The present level of tourist traffic has not impacted any serious problem on sustainable development. However, there is a large movement of domestic tourism within the country.
Hotels and other tourist establishments follow the guidelines framed by the Ministry of Tourism.

The main strength of Indian tourism at present is its cultural attractions, particularly monuments and archeological remains, fairs and festivals, wild life and beaches. The aim of the tourism policy now is to diversify the tourism product in such a way that the development of ecotourism and nature based tourism is promoted to attract environmentally conscious tourists.

Challenges  

The Ministry of Tourism is making vigorous effort for the sustained growth of tourism through synergy programme and establishing effective co-ordination with state governments and other agencies to develop infrastructure for sustainable tourism. There are no serious constraints on pursuing sustainable tourism.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising   

The Indian Institute of Tourism and Travel Management organise periodical training programmes on various aspects of Sustainable tourism. They also organise separate programmes for policy makers and administration.
The Ministry of Tourism has launched Tourism Awareness Programmes in collaboration with Pacific Asia Tourism Association (PATA) India Chapter and the Industry. The programme has been well received by the industry and the consumers.

Information   

Information is disseminated through brochures, computer media, Workshops for tour operators, travel agents and other concerned parties.
Mapping and inventorying of natural resources and ecosystem characteristics in tourist areas is an ongoing activity of the Government.
Potential users of information have to approach the concerned agencies. Information is also available on the World Wide Web.

Research and Technologies   

Technology-related issues are already incorporated in the ecotourism and Environment Policies of the Government.

Financing   

Activities in this area are through the national budget and private sector partnership.

Cooperation

The Ministry of Tourism, Government of India is promoting India as a major tourist destination through its tourist offices in abroad and mission. The Ministry is also participating in international meetings/exhibition, fairs and festivals, seminars, etc. Recently, Ministry of Tourism has launched a multimedia CD-ROM on Indian Tourism. Sustainable tourism is promoted through all these efforts. The Environmental pledge is printed in every brochure produced by the Ministry of Tourism.

Bangaram Island in Lakshadweep group of Islands, India is a model sustainable tourism destination. Cooperation is generally provided through guidance and financial assistance. Examples of other cooperation in this area include: The conservation project of Ajanta and Ellora, which has been taken up with the assistance of Overseas Economic Cooperation Fund (OECF) of Japan.

A study for the development of a strategy for Environmentally sustainable Tourism in Andamans has been completed with the assistance of World Tourism Organisation (WHO) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

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This information was provided by the Government of India to the 7th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Last update: February 1999.



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