Heavy traffic flow indicates sudden rise of carbon emissions in Shimla


The Shimla town indicates a sudden rise of carbon attributive due to the heavy increase in vehicles and shifting of power consumption from LPG to thermal energy based electricity.

Releasing comparative study of power consumption and carbon emissions of the town conducted by the world agencies, the Deputy Mayor of Shimla MC Mr. Tekinder Singh Panwar suggested that with the rise of carbon owing to vehicular traffic, Shimla Municipal Corporation should have to need a strategic move on the analogy of NCR advocating for odd-even car formula. He said it would not only reduce the traffic but also contain the carbon emission in the Queen of hills.

Launching the Green House Gas (GHG) inventory for Shimla town prepared under the urban Low Emission Development Strategies (LEDs) project funded by the European Union commission and UN habitat Mr. Tikender Singh Panwar maintained that Shimla is amongst one of the few cities like Rajkot in Gujarat and Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh to have GHG inventory.

He pointed out that the major challenge is the high consumption of energy and equally high emission of gases mainly from transport and residential sectors hence the efforts are to be made for reduction of both.

Supporting for the reduction of the highest contributor of CO2 emissions transport, he said that it could be brought about by following the Delhi’s odd-even formula of vehicular movement and also switching over to cleaner fuels more on CNG.

The total energy consumption of Shimla was 16,07,996 Giga Joules (GJ) including transport -78,59,775 GJ, residential – 2,49,888 GJ, commercial/institutional – 4,419 GJ, Industrial – 1,02,007 GJ, Industrial – 1,01,007 GJ, Agricultural – 29,66,333 GJ, Waste – 23,93,468 GJ.

The report points out that the largest Green House Gas (GHG) emission was owing to transport (35.91 percent) residential buildings (24.21 percent) and commercial/institutional (14.93 percent) he said.

He said, “With the explicit data at hand, I am going to go by the wisdom of the SMC house and in case the house does not agree I will write to the chairman of NGT that it is a fit case for implementing the odd-even formula. If there is an incidental increase of CO2 emissions, it will become difficult to live in such an environment.”

The whole of the cart road is a total chaos and there was the need to make the area livable, he said, adding that although this formula is not a permanent solution, there needs to have other more concrete development strategies to be adopted like ropeways.”

Besides, sending the report to State Government for action the civic body also intends to call a stakeholders meeting soon to initiate measures to help tackle the situation. Mr. Tikender Panwar said that it was also found that the LPG consumption has also declined with the people switching to induction heaters for cooking purposes.

The energy usage from electricity was highest which was – 5,00,949 GJ, which could be minimized by switching to solar energy as the data reveals that the GHG emission by electricity sources was -114493 tonnes of CO2, added he. He suggested the need to bring more use of complete renewable energy in the commercial and residential sectors like use of solar panels for water heating, cooking and lighting.

It is pertinent to mention that the NGT last year cracking its whip on Shimla’s vehicular pollution, the unregulated mobility of vehicular traffic had directed the State Government to take concrete measures.

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ML Verma is a Senior journalist, with more than a decade of experience of active reporting for electronic media, news agencies and fast paced online media.

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