Resource requirements of inclusive urban development in India: Insights from ten cities

Ajay Singh Nagpure, Mark Reiner, Anu Ramaswami

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1 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper develops a methodology to assess the resource requirements of inclusive urban development in India and compares those requirements to current community-wide material and energy flows. Methods include: (a) identifying minimum service level benchmarks for the provision of infrastructure services including housing, electricity and clean cooking fuels; (b) assessing the percentage of homes that lack access to infrastructure or that consume infrastructure services below the identified benchmarks; (c) quantifying the material requirements to provide basic infrastructure services using India-specific design data; and (d) computing material and energy requirements for inclusive development and comparing it with current community-wide material and energy flows. Applying the method to ten Indian cities, we find that: 1%-6% of households do not have electricity, 14%-71% use electricity below the benchmark of 25 kWh capita-month-1; 4%-16% lack structurally sound housing; 50%-75% live in floor area less than the benchmark of 8.75 m2 floor area/capita; 10%-65% lack clean cooking fuel; and 6%-60% lack connection to a sewerage system. Across the ten cities examined, to provide basic electricity (25 kWh capita-month-1) to all will require an addition of only 1%-10% in current community-wide electricity use. To provide basic clean LPG fuel (1.2 kg capita-month-1) to all requires an increase of 5%-40% in current community-wide LPG use. Providing permanent shelter (implemented over a ten year period) to populations living in non-permanent housing in Delhi and Chandigarh would require a 6%-14% increase over current annual community-wide cement use. Conversely, to provide permanent housing to all people living in structurally unsound housing and those living in overcrowded housing (<5 m cap-2) would require 32%-115% of current community-wide cement flows. Except for the last scenario, these results suggest that social policies that seek to provide basic infrastructure provisioning for all residents would not dramatically increasing current community-wide resource flows.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number025010
JournalEnvironmental Research Letters
Volume13
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research has been supported by the US National Science Foundation, through two grants: Partnership for International Research and Education (PIRE grant 1243535)) grant #1243535 and Sustainability Research Network (SRN; 1444745). We thank Samuel Tabory and Shruti Saxena from the University of Minnesota for their valuable assistance during data collection and manuscript editing. We thank Safal Constructions Pvt. Ltd., Ahmedabad and Dhaval Monani, Rajkot, India for providing data on construction in India. AR developed the concept and the methods used by different teams in this paper; ASN implemented the methodology with focus on India data sources; MR provided expertise on structural engineering and construction.

Funding Information:
This research has been supported by the US National Science Foundation, through two grants: Partnership for International Research and Education (PIRE grant 1243535)) grant #1243535 and Sustainability Research Network (SRN; 1444745). We thank Samuel Tabory and Shruti Saxena from the University of Minnesota for their valuable assistance during data collection and manuscript editing.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 The Author(s). Published by IOP Publishing Ltd.

Keywords

  • clean fuels
  • electricity
  • inclusive development
  • infrastructure
  • material use
  • slum

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