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  • Reply to: India’s chaotic and messy use of energy   3 weeks 3 days ago

    According to the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), India’s apex power sector planning body, the country’s per capita electricity consumption has reached 1010 kilowatt-hour (kWh) in 2014-15, compared with 957 kWh in 2013-14 and 914.41 kWh in 2012-13.
    Over the years there has been a significant shift in the sector-wise consumption patterns, as there has been a decrease in the share of agriculture and industrial sectors and an increase in the share of the domestic and commercial sectors. In FY90, the industrial consumers accounted for 46.0% of total sales by utilities, while the domestic and agriculture sectors accounted for 16.9% and 25.1%, respectively. The industrial segment’s share in overall consumption has come down due to improved consumption norms after adoption of energy-efficient technologies, and also due to the industrial sector’s use of captive power. The domestic segment has overtaken the agriculture sector and has emerged as the second-largest consumer segment of power largely due to increased urbanisation, rise in disposable incomes, and the consequent increase in use of domestic electrical appliances. Consumption of power by commercial establishments has increased with the rise in the service sector in India.
    To quote the Planning Commission “Contrary to other developed and developing countries, total primary commercial energy requirement in India has been falling with respect to the growth in GDP largely because higher energy prices have led to its efficient use. The elasticity for per capita primary commercial energy supply with respect to per capita GDP (i.e. percent increase in per capita energy consumption for one percent increase in per capita GDP) estimated from the time series data of India over 1990-91 to 2003-04 comes to 0.82 which is significantly lower than 1.08 estimated for the period since 1980-81. Similarly the elasticity for per capita electricity generation is only 1.06 for the period from 1990-91 to 2003-04 compared to 1.30 for the period since 1980-81. However, the energy elasticity of GDP growth in India may not fall as much in the future as rising income levels will foster life style changes that are more energy intense”.
    However, one of the limitations is that India is not well endowed with conventional energy resources like oil gas or uranium.Coal is abundant but regionally concentrated and of low calorie and high ash content,
    India's electricity consumption is expected to rise to around 2,280 BkWh by 2021-22 and 4,500 BkWh (billion kilowatt hours) by 2031-32, according to Forest College and Research Institute

  • Reply to: India’s chaotic and messy use of energy   3 weeks 4 days ago

    Energy policy presumably helps to make energy available wherever needed at a reasonable price. Energy policy presumably also encourages use of local sources and renewable sources. India is well endowed with energy sources such as muscular power (human and animal), coal, hydro, solar and nuclear. What is lacks is oil.

    India's energy policy and industrial policy need not necessarily encourage automation over human labor - in a country with enough people, encouraging manual labor is critical. In fact senseless automation, in an effort to become globally competitive is a self defeating exercise - surely the only entities which make money through automation are the machine manufacturing entities which are overwhelmingly in the developed world. The machine users in the developing world, meanwhile, mutually race to the bottom.

    India needs to build on its strenghts in the area of energy which are mentioned above - and policy needs to recognize that. India need not pursue per capita energy consumption levels prevailing elsewhere - what it needs is installing enough to meet demand reliably. And the gap seems to be small. Energy efficiency is definitely needed and effort needs to be made- but that is a mix of energy and industrial policy and human habits.

  • Reply to: Measuring poverty in a rapidly changing world   1 month 1 week ago

    In measuring poverty, it's necessary to measure: maternal deaths during childbirth, infectious diseases, Hunger especially the increase in food prices, teenage pregnancy,homelessness, Gender based violence, access to potable water and other utilities.

  • Reply to: From population bomb to development opportunity: New perspectives on demographic change   1 month 1 week ago

    In fact, we could be even more positive as this article still refers to "elderly" as anyone over 65 years of age even though we cannot compare 65 year old's or 80 year old's for that matter over time given that their life expectancy has doubled over the last 100 years. Instead, it may be better to define them according to a particular number of years of life left (e.g. a remaining life expectancy of 15) and the age at which that falls (e.g. 72 for women). Similarly, labour force participation of women has vastly improved over the last half a century, meaning that the "working age population" as an indicator of the people who sustain them is also not accurate. The actual "old age dependency ratio" is therefore actually higher, but with better prospects. See also

  • Reply to: From population bomb to development opportunity: New perspectives on demographic change   1 month 1 week ago

    Appreciate the positive views on demographic change happening globally. We need to look at other side of the coin as well to understand real dividend.Steep decline in fertility in many countries of Asia and in a limited way in Africa led to dramatic decline in child mortality rates and consequently swelling in working age group( 15-64)cohorts. in many developing countries like India, this demographic dividend is becoming a health penalty and poverty syndrome. Crumbling public healthcare systems,low allocation of GDP to health sector and rising healthcare costs ( OoPE)creating a new threat similar to high infant and child mortality rates in earlier decades of 1950-1980s. Same is true for the rising elderly population in such countries. Real question is who is benefitted by this demographic dividend and in what way and where? paradoxically we need to address and examine the equity issues linked with demographic dividend.