Decarbonising Transport in Emerging Economies(DTEE) Project

Context:

NITI Aayog and the International Transport Forum (ITF) of OECD jointly launched the ‘Decarbonizing Transport in Emerging Economies’ (DTEE) project in India.

Decarbonising Transport in Emerging Economies (DTEE):

One of the biggest challenges for climate change mitigation is to enable emerging economies to continue lifting people out of poverty while at the same time reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Emerging economies can hardly be expected to curb their economic development and stop improving living standards as the price for limiting climate change. The challenge is therefore to accommodate the growing transport demand that often comes with economic development in an environmentally sustainable way.

The ITF’s Decarbonising Transport in Emerging Economies (DTEE) project helps governments of emerging nations to identify ways to reduce their transport CO2 emissions and meet their climate goals.

  • The DTEE project supports transport decarbonisation in Argentina, Azerbaijan, India and Morocco.
  • The ITF will design a tailor-made transport emissions assessment framework. This will account for all the countries’ relevant characteristics including their development plans, and enable governments to better understand current and future transport activity and related CO2 emissions.
  • This project will help emerging economies achieve their NDC commitments by establishing pathways to reduce transport CO2 emissions that will cover several transport sub-sectors and transport modes.
  • Country-specific modelling tools and policy scenarios will help the participating governments to implement ambitious CO2-reduction initiatives for their transport sectors.

The DTEE is collaboration between the International Transport Forum (ITF) and the Wuppertal Institute, supported by the International Climate Initiative (IKI) of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety.

International Transport Forum (ITF)

  • It was created in 2006 by ministers from 43 countries.
  • It is an intergovernmental organisation within the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) with 60 member countries.
  • It is headquartered in Paris, France.
  • It acts as a think tank for transport policy and organises the Annual Summit of transport ministers.
  • ITF is the only global body that covers all transport modes.
  • The ITF is administratively integrated with the OECD, yet politically autonomous.

Transport sector in India

The transport sector of India is the third most greenhouse gas (GHG) emitting sector, where the major contribution comes from the road transport sector.

  • India’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) reflect that transport is one of the authorities’ main action areas for decarbonisation, even if no specific mitigation target is set for the transport sector.
  • The overall target is to reduce the emission intensity of the country’s GDP by between 33% and 35% to 2030, compared to 2005.
  • Out of the total carbon dioxide emissions in India, 13% come from the transport sector. These emissions have more than tripled since 1990.
  • Total vehicle sales (including motorcycles) has increased from about 10 million in 2007 to over 30 million in 2019, and the total number of vehicles on the road is expected to nearly double to about 200 million by 2030, thereby presenting a big challenge in terms of emissions

Benefits of DTEE for India

  • In India, the CO2 emitted per inhabitant was almost one-twentieth that of an average OECD country in 2010.
  • Yet, India’s transport CO2 emissions are likely to increase by almost 6% annually to 2030.
  • This project will provide the government with a detailed understanding of current and future transport activity and the related CO2 emissions as a basis for their decision-making.
  • The five-year project will help India develop a pathway towards a low-carbon transport system through the development of modelling tools and policy scenarios.
  • The project will design a tailor-made transport emissions assessment framework for India.
  • Stakeholder workshops, training sessions, briefings for policy makers and mitigation action plans will stimulate further research and the development of policies beyond the duration of the project.
  • Capacity building activities will ensure that partner institutions can revise NDC commitments independently in the 5-year review cycle.

Way forward

Urban mobility provides some of the main challenges for decarbonising transport in India. Most Indians will live in cities in 2050. This massive increase in the urban population coupled with rising living standards and increased demand for motorised transport will make it a challenge to meet urban mobility needs in a sustainable way. If it is not met, drastic increases in emissions will cause climate change and local pollution. Mastering it requires enhanced transport infrastructure, increased public transport supply and renewal of the vehicle fleet with energy efficient, notably electric, models. Also, issues of data availability need to be tackled.

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