Tag archive for 'carbon emissions'

Recycle Guru: Carbon Savings Achieved by Recycling

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Recycle Guru is an online platform helping citizens recycle their waste by enabling the informal recycling sector. It promotes the more sustainable use of resources to make communities healthier and cleaner and seeks to instill greater dignity in the recycling profession as well as into the perception of citizens who rely upon their services. Recycle Guru initiates the recycling process by collecting paper, plastic, metal, and glass wastes from households in Bangalore.


The motive of this project was to create a tool to estimate the Energy and GHG Emissions (or Carbon Footprint) conservation benefits of recycling versus the business-as-usual option for municipal waste management in India: landfilling. Achieved Energy saving is contextualized in terms of equivalent hour of usage of CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps), ceiling fans, laptop, washing machine, LCD TV, and the equivalent carbon sequestration capacity of trees.


Paper waste is categorized into following categories: paper sheets, newspaper inserts, newsprint, cardboard, and magazines. The Recycle Guru team observed the percentile contribution of each waste type as the following:

Paper sheets – 95%

Newspaper Inserts – 5%

Cardboard – 60%

Magazines – 40%

Life cycle emission (implies manufacturing from Virgin material, 0% recycled material) of each subcategory mentioned above is as follows:

Life cycle emission of Virgin and Recycled Paper

Using the first order decay method, the emissions from disposal is estimated to be 1.725 kg CO2e/kg of waste. The total emissions saved from recycling is calculated by subtracting the life cycle emissions of the recycled material from the life cycle emissions of the virgin material and then adding the landfilling emissions. The results are displayed in the following table:

Paper: Total Avoided Emission (Per Kg of paper)


Plastic waste consists of the following three categories: high value plastic (high density polyethylene), PET bottles (polyethylene terephthalate), low value plastic (low density polyethylene). The life cycle emissions from manufacturing for each subcategory are displayed in the table below.

Life cycle emission of virgin and recycled plastic

Since Degradable Organic Carbon in plastic is almost negligible, methane generation from its disposal in landfills is considered to be Zero. To calculate the avoided emissions from recycling, the same formula as that for paper was used. The results are displayed in the following table:

Plastic: total avoided emission (per kg of plastic)



Metal waste only contains one category comprising both aluminum and steel. As per the pattern observed so far, percentile contribution of aluminum and steel in metal waste is found to be 75% and 25%, respectively. The life cycle emissions (implies manufacturing from Virgin material, 0% recycled material) of each subcategory mentioned above is as follows:

Life cycle emission of virgin and recycled metal


Since degradable organic carbon in metal is almost negligible, methane generation from its disposal in landfills is considered to be zero. Emission savings for each category is estimated using the same equation as paper and plastic with the results displayed below.

Metal: total avoided emission (per kg of metal)



Glass waste is categorized into the following categories: beer bottles (brand: Kingfisher), container glass, and generic glass. As observed so far by Recycle Guru team, there were many instances when beer bottles were counted in pieces instead of kilogram. Hence, carbon saving from beer bottles is estimated based on number of pieces taken for recycling. Kingfisher beer bottles (made up of glass) mostly come in 650ml and 330ml. These two
major categories are considered in modeling the carbon saving from piece of each type. Life cycle emission (implies manufacturing from virgin material, 0% recycled material) of each subcategory mentioned above is as follows:

Life cycle emission of Virgin Glass, Life cycle emission of Virgin Beer Bottle Glass

Since degradable organic carbon in metal is almost negligible, methane generation from its disposal in landfills is considered to be zero. Emission savings for each category is estimated using the same equation as paper, plastic, and metal and the results are displayed in the following two tables.

Glass: Total avoided emission (per kg of Glass), Beer Bottle: Total avoided emission (per piece of beer bottle)

As discussed above, the energy saving achieved is expressed in terms of following contexts: CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps), ceiling fans, laptop, washing machine, LCD TV, and the equivalent carbon sequestration capacity of trees. Electricity emission factor (including AT&T Loss) for Bengaluru city is 1.27 kgCO2e/kwh generated. The following table displays the results:

Energy consumption of contexts (appliances)

To find about the assumptions taken and the equations used, the original report can be read here.

ENGINEER 2010 Annual Tech Fest Carbon Footprint Calculation

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Eliminate Carbon Emissions (ECE) Pvt. Ltd was contracted by the ‘ENGINEER 2010’ CORE to calculate their Carbon Footprint Calculation (i.e. an inventory of the total Greenhouse Gas Emissions that contribute to Climate Change), resulting from direct and indirect resource consumption through the annual technical fest’s operations. The subsequent report encompassed the first phase–‘Realise’– of the three-phase project comprising of Carbon Footprint Calculation (‘Realise’), Carbon Footprint Minimisation
(‘Minimise’) and Carbon Footprint Neutralisation (‘Neutralise’). This blog post discusses the findings of this report.


Project Goals and Scope:

The goals of the ‘Realise’ phase of the project were, to determine for ENGINEER 2010 the total resource consumption inventory, total carbon footprint, activity-differentiated annual carbon footprint, stakeholder-differentiated annual carbon footprint, and contextualization of total carbon footprint and carbon emissions intensity of stakeholder operations. The analysis of those aspects of operation would form a benchmark for assessing the impact of future members, and the aggregate and dissected carbon footprints were to be communicated in easily understandable terms. The results of this research were intended to serve as a diagnostic tool to help mitigate future carbon emissions.


Boundaries were defined in consultation with ENGINEER Management and involved two key-decision making areas, activities to be included and stakeholders to be considered. See previous blog post for discussion of protocols followed. More attention is paid to activities that are defined as ‘Key Source Categories, which are defined as those whose collective contribution account for 95% of the total footprint (when added incrementally in order of decreasing contribution). Activity boundaries categorized as Scope 1, 2, and 3 can be found in Table 1 on page 8 of the original report. Stakeholder boundaries were determined through consultation with the Client, and the results are displayed in the table below:

ENGINEER 2010 Carbon Footprint Control Project Stakeholder Boundary Summary

The following table presents the extent of LCA incorporated into the Emission Factors selected for the Carbon Footprint calculation.

ENGINEER 2010 Carbon Footprint Control Project Emission Factor LCA Status


Activity data was collected through periodic meetings with ENGINEER CORE representatives. Questionnaires were used to define relevant stakeholder groups and activities as well as to create an “activity vs. stakeholder mapping.” Electricity, water, and fuel consumption data was obtained from the previous year’s data to begin developing a pre-event estimate. To collect visitor travel activity data, detailed quantitative audience research was conducted to measure emissions, with a sample size of 10% of the expected audience being selected at random to answer a questionnaire.


Activities included within the footprint boundary were further differentiated into multiple activity sub-types. The results are displayed in table 4 on page 13 of the original report. Activity data was then multiplied by the appropriate GHG Emissions Factors developed for India, displayed in Appendix B of the same report.



The following table presents the extrapolated aggregated resource consumption inventory for ENGINEER 2010.

ENGINEER 2010 Carbon Footprint Control Project Resource Consumption Inventory

The total Carbon Footprint of ENGINEER 2010 for the activities presented in the first table and the stakeholders in the second is estimated to be 29.3 tons of CO2e. The following table and figure present the contributions to this total footprint differentiated across all activity groups.

ENGINEER 2010 Carbon Footprint Control Project Activity-Differentiated Total Carbon Footprint

As demonstrated here, travel and logistics was the largest contributor (11.2 tons CO2e–38.4%), and electricity was the second largest (9.6 tons CO2e–32.8%). Food, beverage, and waste was a distant third (4.4 tons CO2e–14.9%).

ENGINEER 2010 Carbon Footprint Control Project Total Carbon Footprint Summary Activity-Group Contributions

The following table and figure present the stakeholder contributions to the Carbon Footprint of all activities included within the footprint boundary.

ENGINEER 2010 Carbon Footprint Control Project Stakeholder-Differentiated Total Carbon Footprint

The largest contribution is from activities related to the ENGINEER CORE (9.7 tons CO2e–33.0%).

ENGINEER 2010 Carbon Footprint Control Project Total Carbon Footprint Summary - Stakeholder-Group Contributions

For discussion of assumptions, data gaps, and limitations, read the original report.



The Carbon Footprint estimate of 29.3 tons CO2e to serve a participant and visitor base of 4,233 persons leads to a per-participant served Carbon Footprint of approximately 6.9 kg CO2e. It must be noted, however, that the carbon efficiency of the participant stakeholder group is very high due to their use of mass transit systems and low reliance on private vehicular transport to the event. Moreover, guest accommodation was handled using in-house facilities. The elimination of luxury hotel accommodations had a drastic impact on the Carbon Footprint, as the arrangement allows for energy efficiency control and monitoring within the event premises that leads to much greater efficiency than is seen in the luxury hospitality industry in India.


In order to optimize resource and energy consumption, a few measures were recommended in the original report: Indoor temperatures can be raised by two degrees Celsius, lights can be switched off two hours per week, and home composting systems can be used for the disposal of biodegradable waste.


The original report can be read here.

IIM(A)’s CHAOS 2010 Annual Cultural Festival’s Carbon Footprint Calculation

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This blog post summarizes the carbon footprint calculation (i.e. an inventory of the total Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHGs) that contribute to Climate Change resulting from direct and indirect resource consumption through event activities) of the IIM(A)’s CHAOS 2010 annual cultural festival, which was contracted to Eliminate Carbon Emissions Pvt. Ltd by the festival’s Organizing Committee.



The project goals were to determine, with the great degree of accuracy possible, the following for CHAOS 2010:

  1. Total Resource Consumption Inventory
  2. Total Carbon Footprint
  3. Resource consumption activity-differentiated Carbon Footprint
  4. Stakeholder-differentiated Carbon Footprint
  5. Per-participant Average Carbon Footprint

Boundaries for the Carbon Footprint Calculation process were defined in consultation with CHAOS 2010 Management. Defining boundaries involved two key-decision making areas: activities to be included (i.e. defining a comprehensive yet manageable set of resources who’s consumption was to be inventoried) and stakeholders to be considered as part of the organization’s footprint (i.e. defining which sets of peoples/groups/functions are to be included within the footprint boundary).



Since Carbon Footprint Reporting for events in India is not mandated by either the Indian Government or the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC), and CHAOS 2010’s initiative to address its Climate Change Impacts is purely voluntary, there was no set of pre-established guidelines for boundary definition to be followed. Thus, the globally accepted methodologies for National GHG Emissions Reporting (adopted by India as part of the Kyoto Protocol) laid down by the IPCC (Inter Governmental Panel on Climate Change) as part of the 2006 Guidelines were used for guidance wherever appropriate. However, given the unique nature of this event, the overall methodology reflected a confluence of standard protocols and event-appropriate approaches which provide an accurate estimate of the Climate Change impact of a unique cultural and live-entertainment event, which CHAOS represents.


Activity Boundaries:

  1. Contributing Directly to Carbon Footprint: Cooking Fuel Consumption, Vehicular Fuel Consumption (these are activities where an individual or business has direct control over the amount of activity and the emission coefficient through technological choices)
  2. Contributing Indirectly to Carbon Footprint (Primary Importance): Electricity Consumption, Water Consumption (these are activities where an individual or business has direct control over the amount of activity but not the emission coefficient through technological choices)
  3. Contributing Indirectly to Carbon Footprint (Secondary Importance): Transportation (Rail, Road, and Air Travel), Food & Beverage comprising of Meat, Seafood, Dairy, Rice, Alcoholic and Bottled Water/Soft Drink Beverage Consumption, Waste Generation, Plastic, Paper and Other Consumables (these are activities where an individual or business can be considered to not have direct control over the amount of activity nor the emission coefficient through technological choices)


Stakeholder Boundaries:

  1. CHAOS 2010 Organization
  2. Event Performers
  3. Event Participants


Life-cycle Boundaries:

CHAOS 2010 Carbon Footprint Emission Factor LCA Status



The research methodology followed for the project centered around the idea of dissecting the event operations and disaggregating the consumption of resources to understand the consumption patterns ‘ground-up’. While this approach was more time-consuming, as opposed to tracking all activities through a ‘centralized’ approach, it helped construct a detailed footprint-map that would be invaluable as an analysis tool to identify stakeholder contributions to overall footprint. This data was then refined and scrutinized for inaccuracies when data appeared to be erroneous.



The total carbon footprint of CHAOS 2010 for the activities and stakeholders presented previously is estimated to be 29.7 tons of CO2e.

CHAOS 2010 Activity-Differentiated Total Carbon Footprint

Table 4 presents the contributions to the total carbon footprint differentiated by scope. Items identified as ‘not known’ represent data that was unavailable for analysis due to constraints encountered by data gathering personnel, and underlined quantities represent activities where consumption was estimated based on an assumed per-participant consumption quantity.

Figure 7 displays the percentage of overall GHG emissions per activity. Auto-rickshaw and flights were the two largest contributors at 29% and 21%, respectively.

CHAOS 2010 Event Carbon Footprint Summary Activity-wise

Table 5 displays the GHG emissions per stakeholder. The participants, at 50%, were by far the largest contributors.

Figure 2 displays the same results in a pie chart.

CHAOS 2010 Event Carbon Footprint Summary Activity-wise (pie chart)



Preemptively, Participant Travel and Waste Generation Footprints may be mitigated in future events through:

  • provision of mass-transit based systems, such as fuel-efficient or alternative fuel (CNG) buses, to transport participants from pre-determined nodal locations in the surrounding areas of IIM(A) to the event.
  • waste management principles centered around waste segregation, organic waste composting, and waste recycling must be adopted in conjunction with the rigorous participant awareness effort to ensure minimal waste is sent to landfills as an outcome of CHAOS.

Finally, based on the above analysis presented earlier, it is recommended that IIM(A) offset a significant percentage of the footprint of CHAOS 2010 (29.7 tons of CO2e) through ‘domestic’ action. It is recommended that IIM(A) review its monthly electricity consumption and set a achievable ‘percentage-reduction’ target for the first quarter during the new Academic Year beginning in mid-2010 to ‘offset’ at least 50% of the 19,192 units (i.e. 10,000 units).

Analysis of Consumption and Footprint of Meluha the Fern, an Ecotel Hotel

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We continue our blog with another post on the hotel industry, this time discussing Mumbai’s 5 star hotel Meluha the Fern, which commissioned cBalance to provide an analysis of its ecological footprint and consumption for the years of 2011-12. Meluha the Fern is a business hotel located in a hot and humid climatic zone (see our last blog post for more information on the different climatic zones) with 141 rooms. Laundry and waste water treatment (aerobic) is off-site, and the average room tafiff is Rs. 6400.

Greenhouse Gas Inventory:

As is evident from the graph, the vast majority of emissions come from electricity generation (84.45%). Laundry is the second largest source (3.88%), followed by PNG (3.48%, dairy (2.49%, and meat (2.27%).

Meluha the Fern Greenhouse Gas Inventory

The total footprint of the hotel was 4224.47 tCO2e, with 0.12 tCO2e per overnight stay, 0.34 tC02e per square meter, and 29.9 tCO2e per room per year.

Meluha the Fern Carbon Footprint Summary

Compared to its peers, Meluha the Fern is in the top 2 percentile for overall energy efficiency, top 4 percentile for hotels in the Hot & Humid climatic zone, top 9 percentile for all 5 star hotels, and top 2 percentile for all business hotels.

Hotel Industry Carbon Footprints


The total CO2e for the reporting period was 1263 tCO2e, with 919.34 tCO2e from guestrooms and 343.23 tCO2e from meetings. The carbon footprint per occupied room on a daily basis was 27.2 kgCO2e and 94.0 kgCO2e per area of meeting space.

The carbon footprint of fuel usage overwhelmingly came from PNG (69%), followed by LPG (18%) and diesel (13%). The cost was even more lopsided, with 96% from PNG and 2% each from LPG and diesel.

Meluha the Fern Fuel Usage Footprint and Cost

Carbon emissions was not the only performance indicator we analyzed, however; water consumption was also evaluated. 29069 kiloliters of water was used by Meluha the Fern (resulting in associated emissions of 16.1 tCO2e). Most of it came by tanker (56%), and domestic water (48%), flushing (25%), and the cooling towers (23%) were responsible for nearly all of its use.

cBalance also analyzed Meluha the Fern’s food waste, which totaled at 112.78 tonnes (resulting in 2.9 tCO2e emissions), 90% of which went to the piggeries, with the remaining 10% being composted.

Meluha the Fern Food Waste Disposal

Laundry is another significant contributor to Meluha the Fern’s ecological footprint. There were 639.96 tons of laundry with an associated emissions of 163.83 tCO2e (260 kgCO2e per ton). The tent card, however, helped save 2% of laundry, meaning 1460 kWh of electricity, 480 KL of water, 700 I of furnace oil, and 4.4 tCO2e GHG emissions per year.

The following table and graph illustrate Meluha the Fern’s solid waste management:

Meluha the Fern's Solid Waste Management

Most of the avoided emissions were from metals (44% and paper 42%).

Meluha the Fern has also achieved large savings from its water practices. The campus area is 1046 square meters, while the rainwater capture area is 3130.55 square meters. 7% of capture rainwater is reused (360 KL per year), and 93% of captured rainwater is recharged into the ground (4782 KL per year).

Energy savings result from Meluha the Fern’s choices of lighting equipment, as is shown by the following data:

Meluha the Fern's Lighting Equipment Efficiency

Meluha the Fern also uses more sustainable forms of indoor cooling, with 10 split AC units (16 tonnes) and 50% of tonnage rated as 3 star equipment or above.

There are other areas as well where Meluha the Fern is able to save energy. 24% of the total pumping capacity comes from VFD pumps. Measures are taken to reduce refrigeration, 6% of the BUA is naturally lit, all of the windows are double-glazed, and all of the water pipes are insulated. 29% of the BUA is covered by BMS (building management systems), and the occupancy controlled area is 49% of the low traffic BUA area.

Some other notable sustainability measures included induction stoves for buffet counters, three self-cooking centers from Rational, a four bin method of trash segregation (at the source), no straws, paper napkins, or coasters, and glass bottles provided for water rather than bottled water (which aren’t filled unless asked for). Lastly, email usage is mandated and recycled paper is used for all stationary.

Other positives were that the data collection in housekeeping and engineering departments was excellent, and all staff members were very knowledgeable about sustainability initiatives within their departments.

Areas for improvement:

There were no sustainability initiatives involving guests, and the percentage of social development activities was very less (less than 1% of total man hours). There were not any norms for the use of organic food, either.


The original report can be read here:

The Carbon Emissions and Energy Use of the Indian Hotel Industry

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We continue our weekly blog with another post on hospitality, this time, an analysis of the hotel industry in general in India. In 2011, USAID and the Indian government’s Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) commissioned a study by cBalance to understand the energy consumption of hotels in India, analyzing their carbon emissions, energy intensity, and efficiency and mitigation opportunities. The project’s goal, specifically, was to collect energy data for a robust set of hotels and hospitals distributed across all known climatic zones and recognized service-class categories in India to provide adequate data for the development of a statistical benchmarking system for buildings within service class categories of the above sectors based on their normalized energy performance index.


Project Scope:

Data set

Energy data collection was based on the following data groups:

Group 1: Business metrics

  1. Service class type and size / service capacity
  2. Area – Campus area, Built-up area, Carpet area, Common area, other use areas – conference area, restaurants etc.
  3. Overnight occupancy (customers, patients)
  4. Total occupancy
  5. Employee strength

Group 2: Energy use

  1. Purchased electricity
  2. Captive power generation and associated fuel consumption
  3. Fuel consumption for steam/water heating
  4. Fuel consumption for cooking/catering
  5. Other fuel consumption
  6. Air Conditioning – installed capacity under all AC technology types
  7. Lighting Load – installed capacity under all lighting technology types
  8. Water pumping load – installed capacity under all lighting technology types
  9. Other plug loads – Equipment, computers etc.
  10. Sub-metered electricity consumption for AC, lighting, water pumping, plug load equipment, office equipment, electric geysers, kitchen equipment, laundry equipment, swimming pool, elevators, ETP/STP.
  11. Renewable energy generation – solar PV, solar thermal water heating, waste to energy etc.
  12. Water and Hot Water consumption.

For this project, 131 hotels across the country in various cities and climatic zones and of various services grades were surveyed . The results are displayed in the following table and map:

Climatic zone map of India

More hotels lie in the warm and humid zone than any other (40), followed by composite (38), temperate (27), cold (25), and hot and dry (17):

Hotel industry in India by zone and service grade

Energy consumption can vary significantly with respect to geographic location, and the following graph displays the results of our data collection:

Indian hotels' greenhouse gas emissions by climate zone

Warm & humid regions consume the most amount of energy per square meter. This is because the high humidity reduces the performance of HVAC systems, requiring more energy to be consumed for cooling. Cold regions, on the other hand, have the lowest emissions because their air conditioning requirements are lower. This illustrates how significant air conditioning is as a portion of a hotel’s total energy consumption.

Energy efficiency also varies a great deal with respect to the service grade of the hotel, as is shown in the next graph:

Indian hotel greenhouse gas emissions by service grade

It may seem counter-intuitive that 4 star hotels have higher emissions per square meter, but this is because they don’t use their space as efficiently as the five star hotels nor have invested in newer and greener technologies. Per overnight stay, 5 star hotels have the highest emissions due to the comfort and amenities they provide their customers with.

The following graphs break down the emissions of each service category per climatic zone. The data used below has also been normalized for whether the hotel does laundry in-house or outsources it, as this contributes a significant portion of the energy usage.

Indian hotel greenhouse gas emissions by service grade and climatic zone per square meter

Indian hotel greenhouse gas emissions by service grade and climatic zone per square meter

Potential for saving:

We calculated the amount of CO2e emissions that could be saved if all 5 star and 4 star hotels in each climatic zone improved their energy efficiency to that of the top 25% (75th percentile) of their peers:

Indian hotel industry potential savings greenhouse gas emissions

As described in the above table, when measured from the built-up area (BUA), 5 star hotels can achieve a savings of 600 to 5000 tonnes of CO2e per year depending on the region, or 400-5000 tonnes of CO2e when calculating by overnight stay. For 4 star hotels, there is a potential savings of 650 to 1600 tonnes of CO2e and 190-530 tonnes when calculated by BUA and overnight stay, respectively. The largest potential for savings is in 5 stars hotels in warm and humid regions.

Further analysis of data, such as open and enclosed space use and technology interventions, has helped us document best practices in the industry and enabled us to create best practice guidelines for others to follow.

Climate Miles understands the unique requirements and challenges of the hotel industry to provide a high degree of comfort to their customers while keeping its footprint low. We work with clients across India through data driven methods to help them realize their carbon footprints relative to their peers with similar amenities. We also help them become more efficient through a wide array of process optimization and technology interventions with minimum disruption, which not only results in emission reduction but also increases bottom lines through cost savings. Our approach towards greening is to develop property specific or hotel chain specific MAC curves which will guide customers to prioritize their green investment opportunities.

MACC analysis is used for developing greening-roadmaps that transform the operations of institutions and corporations to set them on a low-carbon pathway. This is achieved by empowering them with information related to the ‘low-hanging fruit’ alternatives that must be pursued before embarking upon token or capital-intensive programs to reduce the Climate Change impacts of operational activities. The goal is to demonstrate the inherent alignment between economically prudent and environmentally imperative alternatives and debunk the myth that environmental responsibility reduces profits. If you would like your hotel to become more energy efficient or would like us to help you develop a energy efficiency or sustainability roadmap, please contact Vivek Gilani (Founder/Director of cBalance Solutions Hub) at vivek@cbalance.in




The original study can be read here.

Royal Orange County Case Study

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Carbon Emission Factors Database License, Carbon ERP Integration and Carbon Footprinting of Royal Orange County Project for Orange County Foundation

The Orange County Foundation is a group of individuals who have experience in eco-friendly architecture and civil construction, and focus on sustainable urban development. The foundation has developed a self-sufficient green housing project at Pashan, Pune, the first of its kind, and is developing another green housing project ‘Royal Orange County’ at Rahatani Pune.

The Royal Orange County (ROC) Project involves eight multistoried buildings, consisting a total of 353 residential flats. The ROC has adopted a number of sustainable and environment-friendly options such as eco-friendly architectural design buildings, renewable energy, waste management, wastewater management and low-carbon embodied construction and building materials.

Project Objective

Life-cycle process mapping of the ROC construction to develop a toolkit for carbon ERP integration into their system.

Internal capacity building and skill development for the Orange County Foundation team to calculate the carbon footprint of their construction projects.

License of authenticated database for India specific emission factors related to construction and building materials, electricity & energy, mobility, AFLOU, waste, and wastewater to map environmental performance and sustainability impact of Orange County Foundation’s projects.

Carbon Footprinting of the design and construction phase of the ROC project.

cBalance’s Role

Annual Enterprise-Use License for cBalance Carbon Emission Factor Database (CEFD) cBalance authorized yearly subscription of the CEFD tool to the Orange County Foundation to map the carbon footprint of projects using India-specific emission factors of construction & building materials, energy, mobility, AFLOU, waste and wastewater.

Training to Orange County Foundation Team for Assessment of Carbon Footprint – cBalance team provided 16 hours extensive training to the Orange County Foundation team on the topic of carbon footprinting, life-cycle of a construction project and introduction to common carbon metrics for building operations. In addition, cBalance provided training on the CEFD tool and instructed how the CEFD can be helpful to choose sustainable and low-carbon activity or material alternatives.

Life-cycle Process Mapping and Toolkit Development for Carbon FootprintThe cBalance team visited the construction site and project office of the ROC. Through a site audit and interviews with project officers, cBalance mapped the activities related to the design and construction phase of the ROC. Thereafter, cBalance developed a toolkit, that integrated into their existing system, for mapping the life-cycle carbon footprint of the ROC and future projects.

Carbon Footprinting of Royal Orange County Residential Housing Project – The cBalance team collected data from the ROC on deforestation, electricity, fuels, and construction & building materials consumption of the construction phase of the ROC and calculated the construction phase carbon footprint using India-specific GHG emission factors. Finally, the cBalance team presented the carbon footprint analysis to the board of the Orange County Foundation.


Subscription to the CEFD and in-person training empowered Orange County Foundation team:

– to calculate the carbon footprint of their projects using India-specific GHG emission factors

– to assess life-cycle environmental performance and sustainable impact of their projects

– to choose sustainable alternatives over conventional construction and building material

– to compare environmental performances of two different construction projects

– to create a baseline and frame future strategies to reduce the carbon footprint

The Orange County Foundation team calculated the carbon footprint of the ROC construction phase and successfully achieved a 15% reduction in GHG emissions compared with previous projects.

Screen Shot 2015-11-18 at 2.55.02 PMScreen Shot 2015-11-18 at 2.54.55 PM


Carbon emissions in the Cement sector in India

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Cement as a commodity plays a vital role in the growth of a nation since it is an essential raw material for concrete which is a key raw material in key sectors like infrastructure, construction, commercial and residential real estate. Globally, cement contributes about 5% of the total CO2 emissions. Concrete is the second most consumed substance on Earth after water. On average, each year, three tons of concrete are consumed by every person on the planet. In India, the cement sector is one of the prominent contributors to conventional as well as GHG emissions. Although there is no statutory obligation on companies to measure and report total air emissions in India, the preparation of air emission inventories can be useful in internal company benchmarking, public reporting, product profiles, and emerging emissions trading. In the near future, it is also possible that such inventories will encourage voluntary actions to promote energy efficiency and GHG emissions mitigations, especially in large, organized industrial sectors like cement


India stands second in the cement production in world after China. The total installed capacity of India in 2009-10 was 236 MT in 2009–2010. In same year the cement production for India was 200.7 MT.


Carbon dioxide (CO2) is emitted from both the chemical process and energy consumption associated with the manufacturing of cement. During calcination or calcining, calcium carbonate (CaCO3)(limestone) is heated in a cement kiln to form lime, a process that emits CO2 as a byproduct. This accounts for about 50% of all emissions from cement production. The resulting lime reacts in the kiln with silica, aluminum, and iron oxides present in the raw material to produce clinker. Clinker, an intermediate product, is mixed with a small amount of gypsum and/or anhydrite to make Portland cement. Indirect emissions from the burning of fossil fuels used to heat the kiln account for about 40% of emissions from cement. Finally, electricity used to power additional machinery and the transportation of cement account for the remaining 5-10% of the industry’s emissions. (Rubenstein)




For this study 51 cement producing Indian companies have been analyzed. ‘Carbon emissions in the Cement sector in India’ have been calculated per ton of cement produced by each company from data available in their annual reports using the process shown in the diagram below. Emissions per ton of cement produced is known as the emission intensity of the company or also referred to as the emission factor. The following Scope 1, Scope 2 and Scope 3 activities as defined are taken into consideration.


Emission factor (TCO2e/Ton cement produced) = Total emissions in FY / Total amount of cement produced in FY


  • Energy fuels comprise of various fossil fuels, wood, municipal waste, peat fuels.
  • Electricity purchased is the quantity of electricity purchased by a company from the grid.
  • Captive power generation is the self generation of electricity for meeting internal requirements. A company can produce electricity through various technologies like diesel generator, gas generator, steam generator etc. Depending on the technology and the fossil fuel used emissions from captive power generation is calculated.
  • In cases where company specific captive generation emission factors are not available an India average for that particular technology has been used
  • Non energy emissions are emissions resulting from the chemical processing of certain materials such as limestone and is obtained from one of the following sources of data as per the IPCC/GHG Protocol guidelines : clinker production, limestone production and cement production
  • Emissions from Raw material purchased include Scope 3 emissions which are attributed to a company when either limestone or clinker is purchased for use as a raw material in cement manufacturing.



Company Name Actual Production in ‘000 Tons Total CO2e in ‘000 tonnes TCO2e/ton cement production Percentage intensity related to India Average Emission factor






Ambuja Cements Ltd.





Andhra Cements Ltd.





Anjani Portland Cement Ltd.





Barak Valley Cements Ltd.





Bheema Cements Ltd.





Binani Cement Ltd.





Birla Corporation Ltd.





Burnpur Cement Ltd.





Cement Corpn. Of India Ltd.





Cement International Ltd.





Cement Manufacturing Co. Ltd.





Century Textiles & Inds. Ltd.





Chettinad Cement Corpn. Ltd.





Cochin Cements Ltd.







cement (Bharat) Ltd.





Deccan Cements Ltd.





Gujarat Sidhee Cement Ltd.





Heidelberg Cement India Ltd.





Hemadri Cements Ltd.





India Cements Ltd.





J K Cement Ltd.





J K Lakshmi Cement Ltd.





K C P Ltd.





Kakatiya Cement Sugar & Inds. Ltd.





Kalyanpur Cements Ltd.





Keerthi Industries Ltd.





Lafarge India Pvt. Ltd.





Madras Cements Ltd.





Mangalam Cement Ltd.





Meghalaya Cement Ltd.





My Home Inds. Ltd.





N C L Industries Ltd.





O C L India Ltd.





Orient Paper & Inds. Ltd.





Panyam Cements & Mineral Inds. Ltd.





Penna Cement Inds. Ltd.





Prism Cement Ltd.





Rain Commodities Ltd.





Rishi Cement Co. Ltd.





Sagar Cements Ltd.





Sainik Finance & Inds. Ltd.





Samruddhi Cement Ltd. [Merged]





Sanghi Industries Ltd.





Saurashtra Cement Ltd.





Shiva Cement







Shree Cement Ltd.





Shree Digvijay Cement Co. Ltd.





Ultratech Cement Ltd.





Vinay Cements Ltd.





Zuari Cement Ltd.













The graph below shows us the emissions per ton of cement produced for each company as well as the emission intensity of the various companies as compared to the India average of 0.85 TCO2e/ ton of cement produced. We can see that about 55% of the companies i.e. 28 out of 51 have emission intensities higher than the India average. Cochin Cement Ltd. has the lowest emission factor of 0.46 TCO2e/ton while the company with the highest factor is Rishi Cement Ltd. at 2.92 TCO2e/Ton cement. The range of the intensity with respect to the average varies from 0.54 of Cochin Cement Ltd. to 1.97 of Rishi Cement Ltd.

India Cement companies Emission inventory

Figure 1: Emission intensities of companies in the cement sector in India



The distribution of emission intensities of the companies analyzed is shown below:

Figure 2: Distribution of emission intensities of companies in the cement sector in India

As visible in the graph above about half of the 51 companies have emission intensities in the medium range. There is quite an even distribution of companies with about a quarter in the above average range and a quarter in the below average range. The 12% of companies in the first bar can be termed as sector leader and set the benchmark for the rest of the industry. Second bar are above average but need some process related interventions to improve efficiency. The laggards are companies in need of major technology advances to improve efficiency and reduce emissions. Such a chart can help policy makers design specific policy initiatives to cater to companies in each range as well provide prioritize incentives based on the quantum of distribution.


Indirect emissions from burning fossil fuels to heat the kiln can be reduced by switching to such as natural gas, biomass and waste-derived fuels. These less carbon-intensive fuels could help reduce almost a quarter of overall cement emissions from 2006 levels by 2050.

Increasing efficiency of the production process so as to reduce the demand for fuel through technical and mechanical improvements will also help drastically reduce emissions. Steps such as switching from inefficienct wet ils to dry ones or regular preventive maintenance could help achieve emission reductions of upto 40%.

Reducing emissions from the calcination process means looking for an alternative to limestone. Blended cement made up primarily of coal fly ash and blast furnace slag replaces some of the limestone-based clinker with other materials. This could help reduce CO2 emissions by as much as 20%, but widespread use of blended cement is limited by other environmental regulations as these substitutes can contain toxic heavy metals; the limited availability of substitute material; as well as some building code restrictions since blended cement can take longer to set.

The final method of containing CO2 emissions is after they are produced through carbon capture and storage. In addition to traditional CCS methods, which are already employed in some power plants around the world, concrete producers can explore using their own product as a sink for CO2. Through the process of accelerated carbonation, CO2 penetrates concrete and reacts with calcium hydroxide in the presence of water to form calcium carbonate; the result is stable, long-term CO2 storage. As a mitigation technology, accelerated carbonation can be achieved by exposing freshly mixed concrete to flue gases with high CO2 concentrations. (Rubenstein)


There are 28 companies out of 51 in the cement sector whose emission factor is more than the India average per ton produced. If all of these companies improve their efficiency using the various methods mentioned above, to atleast the Indian average there will be a savings of upto 10.41 Million TCO2e. In a potential best case scenario, if all the other 50 companies perform atleast as well as the best in class, i.e Cochin Cement ltd. which has an emission intensity of 0.46 TCO2e/ton of cement produced, approximately 71.21 Million TCO2e can be saved. Such sector specific and company specific understanding of GHG intensities can be a useful tool for policy making in order to frame direct and target based incentives which will be necessary if India is to achieve its goal of 20-25% emission reduction over 2005 levels by 2020.



1) Scope 1: Direct air emissions from sources that are owned or controlled by the company These include direct process emissions (e.g. calcination of raw materials), direct stationary combustion in furnaces, diesel generator sets, etc., from fossil fuels, and mobile emissions from company-owned vehicles.

2) Scope 2: Indirect air emissions from the generation of purchased electricity consumed by the company 3) Scope 3: Other indirect air emissions from sources not owned or controlled by the facility like extraction and production of purchased materials, transportation of purchased fuels, clinker imports, and use of sold products and services


  • (The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI),USEPA, 2005 • http://www.ibef.org/download/Cement_270111.pdf
  • http://www.ibef.org/download/Cement_270111.pdf
  • Calculating CO2 process emissions from Cement Production (Cement-based Methodology), Guide to calculation worksheet (October 2001) • Rubenstein, Madeleine – http://blogs.ei.columbia.edu/