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Nagpur takes lead with India’s first city-specific Zero Carbon plan for buildings

The Plan includes a holistic roadmap covering public buildings, government-led affordable housing, commercial buildings as well as homes, and an implementation strategy to achieve net-zero buildings city-wide by 2050.
Last Updated 04 March 2024, 08:33 IST

Mumbai: The Nagpur city, considered the geographical centre of India, has embarked on an ambitious journey towards sustainable development by launching the Zero Carbon Buildings Action Plan (ZCBAP).

It sets a precedent for the state of Maharashtra, and is also a pioneering effort to boost building sector decarbonisation, contributing to India’s net zero by 2070 target.

The plan includes a holistic roadmap covering public buildings, government-led affordable housing, commercial buildings as well as homes, and an implementation strategy to achieve net-zero buildings city-wide by 2050.

The roadmap further includes actions to help reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the context of choice of building materials, and how buildings are designed, built, managed and deconstructed.

Residential, commercial, and institutional buildings were responsible for 58 per cent of Nagpur's total energy consumption and for 56 per cent of the city's GHG emissions in the year 2017-18, according to Nagpur's Climate Resilient City Action Plan developed by Nagpur Municipal Corporation (NMC) and Nagpur Smart and Sustainable City Development Corporation Limited (NSSCDCL), with technical assistance from ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability, South Asia and UN-Habitat.

The ZCBAP has been led by the NSSCDCL along with NMC, in collaboration with international partners such as the World Resources Institute (WRI), the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and ICLEI South Asia through the Zero Carbon Buildings Accelerator (ZCBA) project.

Emani Kumar, Executive Director, ICLEI South Asia, said: “The ZCBAP is aimed at transforming Nagpur into a city where all buildings, whether new constructions or existing structures, achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. This plan is adeptly interwoven with India's Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) that focus on reducing GHG emissions intensity of its GDP by 45 per cent by 2030 from 2005 levels and on achieving the country’s long-term strategy to reach net-zero emissions by 2070.”

NSSCDCL CEO Prithviraj BP said: “This plan aligns with the Climate Smart Cities Assessment Framework (CSCAF), India’s Long-Term Low-Carbon Development Strategy, and the Urban Outcomes Framework, among others instrumental in tracking and assessing urban sustainability and climate readiness. The action plan also supports Nagpur in meeting its global commitments with the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy (GCoM) and the Race to Zero campaign.”

Net-zero emissions refer to reducing GHG emissions to the lowest possible amount, and balancing out any remaining emissions by using natural processes that absorb gases, like the absorption done by green cover and oceans. Net-zero buildings aim to minimise GHG emissions from construction materials, building use, and end-of-life demolition by employing reduction strategies across their entire lifecycle.

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(Published 04 March 2024, 08:33 IST)

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