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

Daljit SinghSubscribe to Daljit Singh

Climate Change: Separating the Wheat from the Chaff

This article compares the future trajectory of carbon emissions of the Annex I countries under the Kyoto Protocol with the emission reduction targets being discussed in the US and the European Union. If the Annex I countries follow these trajectories, they would meet the Kyoto Protocol commitment in terms of the stock of emissions since 2008, only in 2021 or 2024. The financial support from these countries for the developing world is a tiny fraction of what is needed. The Annex I countries need to adopt a much more aggressive target for emission reduction by 2020 and offer much stronger support for mitigation and adaptation if they are serious about climate protection.

Emerging Issues in the Indian Gas Sector: A Critical Review

India's gas sector is in the midst of a major controversy with potential consumers exercised about what they see as an arbitrary and non-transparent pricing policy on production from recent discoveries. This article explores all the relevant issues arising from discovery, production and pricing of gas from contracts awarded in the New Exploration and Licensing Policy regime. It calls for policies to be drafted in a transparent and inclusive manner, giving due consideration to issues such as the most efficient use of gas, the subsidy burden, the market structure and the country's energy security.

Alternating Currents

The Indian electricity sector is poised at a critical moment. Implementation of the sweeping Electricity Act, 2003 is under way, even as there is considerable ferment in international thinking about electricity restructuring. This paper introduces a collection of papers written for EPW that review international experience with electricity restructuring in order to inform the Indian debate. The paper also provides a brief recent history of electricity restructuring to set the context for the country and regional papers. The history traces the initial rise of electricity restructuring to the status of "conventional wisdom" in the sector, and the more recent questioning of the model due to a series of setbacks and crises in different parts of the world.

Of Rocks and Hard Places

Indian debates over electricity have been strongly influenced by international experiences. This paper provides a critical overview of recent global debates on electricity restructuring. The paper first discusses the electricity price trajectories in countries that are often cited as models of reform. It then discusses several challenges to creating competitive markets in electricity. The final two sections relate international experience to the Indian context. The authors find that the full model of organised electricity markets will be extremely challenging to implement in India, and suggest a more pragmatic "no-regrets" approach. Suitably designed, competition may be one element in this approach but it is not a short-cut to larger reforms.

Open Access in Electricity Distribution

The Electricity Act, 2003 allows open access to the T&D networks of the licensees with the payment of a surcharge (over the wheeling charge) to compensate them for the loss of revenue. The surcharge will play a critical role in managing the transition to competition as the electricity regulatory commissions try to balance the conflicting requirements of making open access economically attractive for HT consumers and protecting the financial health of licensees. This paper presents an overview of the recommendations made by various parties regarding the calculation of the surcharge and discusses some concerns about their application. The likely revenue loss for the licensees and the extent to which the various recommended methods compensate the utilities for the revenue loss are also assessed. There is a need to refocus on broader concerns if the transition to competition is to be made a little easier.
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