On 2 July 2021, the Kansai Research Center of the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES-KRC) held a meeting to share information on environment (air and water quality) and business-related issues in India with member companies of the Japan Environmental Technology Association (JETA), and to promote further exchanges. This meeting was a follow-up to an awareness workshop on Japanese technologies to monitor emissions from thermal power plants and other energy-intensive industries in India, held in collaboration with JETA on 17 February 2021. The objective of the workshop was to inform Indian stakeholders about the status of implementation of smoke emission control and management in thermal power plants, one of the main causes of pollution, and the importance of introducing technologies to accurately measure and evaluate smoke emissions. Following this February workshop, the July meeting was supported by the Ministry of the Environment, Japan (MOEJ) and the “Blue Sky Initiatives”, which is promoted by the Japanese Embassy in India to help improve air quality through use of Japanese technology. About 50 people, mainly manufacturers of measurement instruments and companies in JETA that maintain and service them, participated in the July meeting.
At the opening remarks, Mr. Kobayashi of JETA explained that the meeting would provide an opportunity to exchange information among participants, including its member companies, to assist in their business deployment in India after COVID-19. Next, Mr. Maeda of IGES expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to share with and hear directly from JETA member companies about this business deployment in India, which will be incorporated into IGES’ future activities.
In Session 1, three specialists made presentations on the current status of air and water-related environmental issues in India. Mr. Sugimoto of the Ministry of the Environment, Japan (MOEJ) introduced how MOEJ will cooperate with the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MOEFCC) of India in the fields of waste, air, water, and climate change, based on an environment-related Memorandum of Cooperation signed between the organizations in 2018. In particular, it was noted that MOEFCC has shown great interest in cooperation in the field of air pollution. Also, the public-private partnership platform (the Japan Platform for Redesign: Sustainable Infrastructure (JPRSI)) was introduced, which offers complete solutions for environmental infrastructure to partner countries, including India. In addition, the speaker noted the difference between India and Japan in terms of the causes of air pollution (with pollution from agricultural sources a serious concern in India), the Indian government’s interest in Japanese toilets and septic tanks, and the potential for future cooperation in the field of waste management.
Mr. Yoshida, of the Japanese Embassy in India, explained that the level of air pollution in India, even at lower levels, was equivalent to the urgent levels in Japan, and that the status of air pollution had not improved much despite the introduction of European-level emission standards in April 2020. Next, the speaker talked about water quality, including issues such as the low sewerage penetration rate (30%) and water availability rate (17%), lack of proper monitoring and strict enforcement of penalties, and opposition from local residents to the construction plan for a sewage treatment plant.
Mr. Hamaguchi of IGES introduced the status of water quality management in India from the perspective of water supply and sewage systems, including issues such as the urgent situation regarding water pollution, sewage pollution and treatment, basic laws and regulations related to water quality, and water quality monitoring systems.
In Session 2, six JETA member companies that manufacture or maintain and service measurement instruments, shared the current status of their businesses in India, including achievements and issues they are facing. The main issues were: a lack of specialists/experts and insufficient staff capacity, low market prices, localization by foreign companies and intensification of price competition, difficulties in promptly understanding Indian regulatory trends and market conditions, and the request of excessive documentation from client companies.
Session 3, based on the information shared in Sessions 1 and 2, consisted of a discussion among participants about the future direction of and approaches to activities in the field of environmental technology in India post-COVID-19, and the support which Japanese companies need from MOEJ. One takeaway point was the essential need for a collaborative approach with state governments and/or major cities that have enacted ordinances on environmental regulations and actively implemented them. It was also suggested that collaboration with the Japan-India Technology Matchmaking Platform (JITMAP), City-to-City Collaboration, and/or ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, could be effective for activities targeting state governments. Moreover, it was also expressed that support from MOEJ to the Indian government is needed and appreciated for stricter emission regulations and comprehensive standard certification.
At the end of the meeting, Mr. Kobayashi of JETA suggested that there should be ongoing exchanges to share information.
With the support of MOEJ and Hyogo Prefectural Government, IGES-KRC has been operating JITMAP in collaboration with The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI). So far, JITMAP has focused on low-carbon and energy-efficient technologies, but since last year expanded the scope to include environmental technologies. If you are interested in the activities of JITMAP, please contact us.
IGES-Kansai Research Centre
E-mail: [email protected]
|13:00-13:15||Takeshi Kobayashi, Chairman, Overseas Committee, Japan Environmental Technology Association (JETA)|
|Toshizo Maeda, Fellow, IGES Kansai Research Centre|
|Session 1: Issues of Air and Water Environment in India|
|13:15-13:55||Ryuzo Sugimoto, Director of International Cooperation and Sustainable Infrastructure Office, Global Environmental Bureau, Ministry of the Environment, Government of Japan||PDF (3.1MB)|
|Yuki Yoshida, Second Secretary, Embassy of Japan in India|
|Toshinori Hamaguchi, Program manager, IGES Kansai Research Centre||PDF (2.2MB)|
|Session 2: Current status of environmental business in India from measurement-related companies ~Status, Achievements, and Issues~|
|13:55-14:30||Ryohei Odakura, HORIBA, Ltd, HORIBA Advanced Techno, Co., Ltd.||PDF (2.9MB)|
|Shunsuke Mochizuki, SHIMADZU CORPORATION|
|Takeyoshi Yamazaki, DKK-TOA Corporation|
|Rieko Shimizu, Yokogawa Electric Corporation|
|Huang Jun Qing, Hiyoshi|
|Toshihisa Ishizuka, MMURATA Keisokuki Service Co., Ltd.|
|Session 1: Q & , Discussion|
|14:30-15:00||Moderator||Toshizo Maeda, Fellow, IGES Kansai Research Centre|