ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Keeping India's Economic Engine Going: Climate Change and the Urbanisation Question

Urbanisation in India is both a necessary input and an inevitable consequence of growth. However, we must accept that the existing urbanisation models are unsustainable at the Indian scale and there is no available alternative trajectory. The international climate change negotiations can be seen as an opportunity to create an environment that will help in the discovery of a more sustainable urbanisation. This paper explores a limited set of emergent issues that will have to be considered as India develops its domestic approach to urbanisation, while negotiating its international position on climate change. It is structured into three broad sections, viz, (a) the feedback loops from urbanisation to climate change and vice versa, (b) actions needed at multiple levels to influence these processes, and (c) the implications of these for India's negotiating position on climate change.

Lessons from the Deluge

The systemic failure in Mumbai during the deluge points to the lack of a clear appreciation of the implications of the city's hazard exposure, the vulnerabilities of its people, infrastructure and institutions, and the absence of coordinated interventions to mitigate risks by a series of governments. A political framework for long-range urban infrastructure development and risk unbundling will need to be constructed in Mumbai.

Water Crisis in Earthquake-Affected Areas of Marathwada

Water should have been a primary consideration while planning the redevelopment of the earthquake-hit region in Marathwada given that water crises are annual occurrences. Instead emphasis was given only to 'seismic' considerations in the rehabilitation programme. This has inevitably led to a water scarcity which is likely to get worse.

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