Potential for climate change mitigation through low carbon investment in Indian roads and railways - An assessment of obstacles and opportunities for the Asian Development Bank

UoM administered thesis: Phd

  • Authors:
  • Priyanka Pali

Abstract

Reducing carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2 Eq) emissions has become more urgent than ever. Low carbon transport can play a vital role in addressing this concern, but the challenges associated with funding large-scale low carbon road and rail transport infrastructure projects in India weakens the potential for addressing climate change mitigation from India’s transport sector. This thesis argues that foreign investment in low carbon road and rail transport in India is crucial, and, if an investment is to deliver real CO2 Eq emissions savings, a genuine commitment to CO2 Eq emissions reductions must be made by both the host state and the foreign investor (in our case the Indian government and the Asian Development Bank respectively) through law, policy and procedure. The work therefore considers the obstacles and opportunities to investments by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in low carbon road and rail transport infrastructure projects in India. India is a key player in the rise in global CO2 Eq emissions, and the road and rail transport sector is responsible for a major proportion of India’s growing emissions. The doctrinal research method is employed to critically evaluate the extent to which India’s laws, policies and procedures promote the opportunities available to the ADB and its investments. This thesis evaluates both the ADB policies/procedures and those of the host country, i.e. India, with a view to assess the extent to which they fully accommodate CO2 Eq emissions savings. In order to understand the extent to which the relevant Indian laws and the ADB’s procedural framework is being implemented and delivered at the ground level, a case study approach is adopted. The case study analyses the development of the Jaipur Metrorail Project, the first ADB funded project of its kind, and discusses the extent to which Indian laws and the ADB’s procedural framework are being fully implemented. This thesis finds that, both, the ADB’s processes and the Indian regulatory and policy structure, are far from satisfactory in ensuring CO2 Eq emissions reduction during the preconstruction and construction stage of the low carbon project. There is an absence of implementation of the applicable policies along with a lack of effective monitoring of CO2 Eq emissions at the ground level and it is recommended that Indian law and ADB’s policies must be structured in a way that CO2 Eq emissions reduction and climate change mitigation objectives are taken into consideration.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
Supervisors/Advisors
Award date1 Aug 2020