WRI used its Greenhouse Gas Protocol tools to help a major city in China and businesses in India measure and manage greenhouse gas emissions. Chengdu – one of China’s most populous cities – and nine large companies in India set clear and ambitious targets to reduce emissions intensity, supporting the achievement of China and India’s national emission reduction goals.

The Challenge

Cities and businesses have a critical role to play if China and India are to meet their ambitious greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions targets. Megacity Chengdu, with an administrative area population of 14 million, is China’s fifth largest city and continues to grow rapidly. In India, the industrial and energy sectors account for three-quarters of emissions. Slowing the rise of, and ultimately reducing, these emissions requires tools to measure and manage them.

WRI’s Role

WRI has worked with Chengdu since 2011 through the Sustainable and Livable Cities Initiative. In 2014, Chengdu developed its first GHG inventory using WRI’s GHG Protocol tools. In 2016, WRI conducted an analysis suggesting that Chengdu’s emissions could peak by 2025 and helped the city develop a roadmap to achieve the target.

In India, WRI has worked since 2013 with The Energy and Resources Institute and the Confederation of Indian Industry to convene and support the India GHG Program (IGHGP), a voluntary industry-led partnership of over 50 large companies committed to measuring and managing their GHG emissions. The potential is large: members account for about 15 percent of India’s GHG emissions and include, for example, NTPC and Indian Railways, the nation’s largest electricity producer and consumer, respectively. Through IGHGP, members receive training on GHG Protocol tools and support on developing GHG inventories and cost-effective emission reduction strategies.

The Outcome

In June 2016, Chengdu announced it would peak its emissions by 2025, ahead of China’s national target of peaking carbon dioxide emissions around 2030. Chengdu’s commitment could avoid emissions equivalent to shutting down 20 U.S. coal-fired power plants by 2025 and demonstrates confidence that a low-carbon economy and economic growth can be pursued together. In India, nine IGHGP members, including the nation’s largest automobile, cement, and chemical companies, have committed to reduce GHG emissions intensity by at least 20 percent, most by 2020, and have agreed to work with their supply chains to measure and manage emissions.

WRI will continue to support cities and companies in contributing to national climate targets, offering input to Chengdu’s strategy for emission reductions after 2025 and expanding the India GHG Program.