1. Prologue
  2. What is sustainable development?
  3. India and GHG
  4. India and Sustainable development
  5. National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC)
    1. Solar
    2. Energy
    3. Water
    4. Agro
    5. Green India (forest)
    6. Habitat
    7. Knowledge
    8. Himalayan Ecosystem
    9. Hill Areas
  6. Hill areas: challenges and solutions
  7. Sustainable Agriculture Development
  8. Coastal Zone Management
  9. Forest and Tree Cover


This three article series contains gist of Economic survey ch.12 + 12th FYP’s chapter on Sustainable development. (MINUS RIO+20, COP18-Doha and COP11-Hyderabad, because they were already covered and available on Mrunal.org/enb

Part 1 of 3 Basics + 8 missions of NAPCC
Part 2 of 3 Industries, Housing, transport
Part 3 of 3 Financing the climate change and some challanges in clean energy

What is sustainable development?

  • When a local mafia cultivates sugarcane using bio-fertilizer, bio-insecticides and drip-irrigation, runs his distillery on solar or wind power, uses earthen-pots instead of polythene bags for distributing his final-product, then we can say he is brewing desi liquor in a sustainable manner.
  • Sustainable Development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.
  • This definition was given by Brundtland Commission in 1987.
  • Official name of Brundtland Commission = World Commission on Environment and Development (WCED)
  • Name of their report = “Our Common Future”

India and GHG

  • India has signed the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC)
  • India has acceded to the Kyoto Protocol in 2002, although as a developing country, India (or China) doesn’t have compulsory targets for emission reduction.
  • But still, India has given voluntary commitment that “by 2020 we’ll reduce the GHG emission intensity of our GDP by 20-25% of 2005 level.”
  • Globally, India’s policy to achieve sustain-able development is guided by the principle of ‘common but differentiated responsibility’ (CBDR). India is one of the countries that prefer an ‘aspirational’ rather than a mandatory or ‘prescriptive’ approach for emission reduction.
  • It is estimated that India’s per capita emission in 2031 will still be lower than the global per capita emission in 2005
    • 2005: global =4.22tonnes of CO2 equivalent
    • 2031: India = under 4 tonnes
  • India is part of 94 Multilaterals Environmental Agreements including
    • Ramsar Convention on Wetlands,
    • Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora (CITES),
    • Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)
  • Environmental protection is even provided in the Constitution
  • environment protection is enshrined in our Constitution
    • DPSP: Article 48A
    • Fundamental duties: 51A
    • Concurrent list: forest; protection of wild animals and birds.

India and Sustainable development


Where is Sustainable angle?

12th Five Year plan (2012-17) Theme: faster, more inclusive and sustainable growth.
National Environmental Policy (NEP) It says, The development which respects ecological constraints and the imperatives of social justice, is sustainable development.
National Agricultural Policy (NAP) Use of country’s natural resources should be

  1. technically sound,
  2. economically viable,
  3. environmentally non-degrading
  4. socially acceptable
National Electricity Policy (NEP) Underscores the use of renewable sources of energy.
National Urban Sanitation Policy
  • eliminate open defecation,
  • promote integrated citywide sanitation,
  • safe disposal and efficient operation of all sanitary installations.
  • generate awareness

^This list is not exhaustive, it has become a fashion to plug “sustainable development” everywhere so in almost every government policy you’ll find them talking about sustainable development.

National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC)

2008 PM launched NAPCC.
2009 PM requested state govt. to prepare SAPCC. (State Action plan on climate change).So far, 21 state governments have prepared such plans.

8 Missions under NAPCC




(Jawaharlal Nehru) National solar mission. To achieve following things by 2022

  1. install 20GW solar power
  2. 2 GW of off-grid Solar
  3. 20 million sq. meter of solar thermal collector area
  4. 20 million rural households to have solar lighting


  • National Mission on Enhanced Energy Efficiency (NMEEE)
  • by 2015, help save about 5% of our annual energy consumption, and nearly 100 million tonnes of carbon dioxide every year
  • PAT and ESCert (more details in part 3 of 30


  • National water mission.
  • increase water use efficiency by 20%
  • Focused attention to vulnerable areas including over-exploited areas
  • And other fancy stuff like integrated water  Management, awareness generation etc.


  • National mission for sustainable agriculture.
  • enhancing productivity and resilience of agriculture
  • Reduce vulnerability to extremes of weather, long dry spells, flooding.

Green India (forest)

  • National mission for Green India
  • afforest an additional 10 million hectare of forest lands, wastelands and community lands.


  • National mission on Sustainable Habitat
  • energy-efficient buildings
  • sewage  Management


  • National mission on Strategic Knowledge for Climate Change
  • Identify challenges arising from climate change,
  • promote the development Knowledge on Climate Change
  • particularly in the areas of health, demography, migration, and livelihood of coastal communities

Himalayan Ecosystem

  • National mission for sustaining the Himalayan Eco System
  • Reduce climate impacts on the Himalayan glaciers
  • And promote community-based management of these ecosystems

Himalayan Eco System

  • acts as a giant carbon ‘sink’.
  • forms a considerably large part of identified Himalayan Biodiversity global hotspot.
States covered entirely name
Entirely (10)
  1. Jammu & Kashmir
  2. Himachal Pradesh
  3. Uttarakhand
  4. Sikkim
  5. Arunachal Pradesh
  6. Nagaland
  7. Manipur
  8. Mizoram
  9. Tripura
  10. Meghalaya
Partially (2) The hill districts of Assam and West Bengal

Now let’s see what 12th FYP has to say

Hill Areas

  • Sustainable Management of Himalayan Ecosystem and Western Ghats
  • Continue following programs in 12th FYP
    • Hill Area Development Programme (HADP)
    • Western Ghats Development Programme (WGDP)
  • An Indian Alpine Initiative should also be started for tracking the dynamics of alpine biomes in the context of climate change.

Hill areas: challenges and solutions

  • most of the hill areas lack infrastructure, particularly roads, power, educational institutions and health care centres.
  • These areas deserve high priority under the flagship programmes, particularly Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and the National Health Mission (NHM).
  • many nation-wide programmes are not suitable for hilly areas, for example, wages should be higher than the wages pre-scribed under MNREGA.
  • Bill to include the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council Area in the Sixth Schedule needs to be expeditiously considered.

Sustainable Agriculture Development

  • Pricing water and electricity appropriately will help recharge the depleting aquifers.
  • Shift urea to a nutrient-based subsidy regime.
  • improve the welfare of farmers and agricultural labour, and help eradicate rural poverty

Coastal Zone Management

Coastal areas are currently classified into four categories (CZ 1 to 4) with different levels of permissions for development activities.

Category What?
1 ecologically sensitive areas
2 permit construction activities based on vulnerability
4 islands

Swaminathan Committee (on coastal zone regulation) has recommended that local circumstances and vulnerabilities should be the basis of coastal zone management and regulations.

Forest and Tree Cover

  • There is already a  Green India mission under NAPCC.
  • But The business-as-usual scenario will however, not suffice.
  • The 12th FYP wants green India mission to be re-organized into a more comprehensive ‘National Mission for a Green India’.
  • Mission is still being finalized, but the realistic aim would to double the present reforestation and afforestation efforts to about 2 mha of forest and tree cover annually.

Mock Questions given @end of part 3 of 3.