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Professor Subhes C Bhattacharyya

Job: Professor of Energy Economics and Policy

Faculty: Computing, Engineering and Media

School/department: School of Engineering and Sustainable Development

Research group(s): Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development (IESD)

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester, LE1 9BH UK

T: +44 (0)116 257 7975

E: subhesb@dmu.ac.uk

W: http://www.iesd.dmu.ac.uk/

 

Personal profile

An internationally renowned specialist of energy for international development with more than 30 years of experience in  global energy-environment issues, Professor Subhes specialises in energy, regulatory and environmental studies with a focus on developing country energy systems. He has extensively investigated energy access issues in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa since 2002 and has led award-winning research in this area through funded projects. He has also extensively worked on energy sector management issues such as energy sector regulation and restructuring in developing countries, and policy issues related to  energy security, climate change, natural resource utilisation and sustainable development. Subhes mainly focuses on applied, multi-disciplinary research that combines engineering, economics, and regulatory and environmental analysis. His research benefits from his past industry experience and his personal knowledge of working with developing country situations. Subhes’ research is supported by various modelling efforts, including end-use type long-range energy-environment system modelling, operations research and other decision support systems as well as regulatory and investment analysis tools. He provides advice on energy related issues on a regular basis.

He is the author of the best-selling book: Energy Economics: Concepts, Issues, Markets and Governance (Springer, 2011). He has also edited a number of other books particularly on rural electrification, mini-grids and energy in Asia. His research project OASYS South Asia received Green Gown Award for Community Innovation at the national and international categories in 2015.

Publications and outputs

  • Reducing non-residential asset sanitisation water footprint for improved public health in water-deficient cities
    Reducing non-residential asset sanitisation water footprint for improved public health in water-deficient cities Tiwary, Abhishek; Bhattacharyya, Subhes; Matouq, Mohammed This paper evaluates the potential for reconfiguring city-scale clean water demand by reducing the non-residential asset sanitsation water footprint. A novel methodological framework is proposed for assessing the feasibility of a mix of three surface sanitisation measures (Manual surface wiping, Mechanical cleaning/Rapid disinfectant spraying, Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation-UVGI treatment) in terms of a Sanitisation waterfootprint index (SWI); three typical application scenarios are considered – high risk-high frequency, moderate risk-moderate frequency, moderate risk-low frequency. The UVGI treatment outperforms the other two surface treatment methods, particularly in high risk-high frequency scenario in the healthcare setting, with SWI as low as 2%. Further, case-study evidence from a ward-level spatial analysis using real-world data estimates SWI ranging between 0-30% in those wards with greater commercial/public assets, showing clear merit of this framework in re-configuring city-scale public health sanitisation water footprint. A cost-benefit analysis (involving resources – staffing, water and chemicals; capital expenditure, and energy costs) shows superior performance of UVGI treatment over the other two methods from the second year onwards, surpassing the initial cost-effectiveness for corresponding manual or mechanical cleaning. Wider implementation of this framework can foster strategic transformation of city-scale water footprint, which is deemed essential for ensuring sustainable growth of water deficient cities globally. The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version. The Publisher's final version can be found by following the DOI link.
  • Integrating the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into Urban Climate Plans in the UK and Japan: A text analysis
    Integrating the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into Urban Climate Plans in the UK and Japan: A text analysis Ozawa-Meida, Leticia; Ortiz-Moya, Fernando; Painter, B.; Hengesbaugh, Matthew; Nakano, Ryoko; Yoshida, Tetsuro; Zusman, Eric; Bhattacharyya, Subhes Cities are increasingly adopting potentially sustainable climate plans. Integrating the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into these plans could help stabilize the climate while generating jobs, narrowing equity gaps, fostering innovation, and delivering other sustainability benefits. Yet, how much cities are integrating the SDGs into climate plans remains poorly understood. This article shed light on this question with a text analysis of SDG “keywords” in climate plans for two British and two Japanese cities. The results revealed that none of the surveyed cities have connected climate with socioeconomic priorities covered in SDG1 (poverty), SDG8 (employment), SDG5 (gender), and SDG10 (inequalities). Meanwhile, the United Kingdom cities made more connections between climate and responsible consumption and production (SDG12) than the Japanese cities. Further, Kyoto, Japan shares a climate-SDGs linkages profile that resembles the United Kingdom cities more than Kawasaki. Though not without limitations, text analysis can facilitate the city-to-city peer learning needed to make urban climate plans sustainable within and across countries. open access article
  • Proceedings of the Virtual International Conference on Aligning Local Interventions with the UN Sustainable Development Goals
    Proceedings of the Virtual International Conference on Aligning Local Interventions with the UN Sustainable Development Goals Bhattacharyya, Subhes This publication presents a summary of the conference and offers a compilation of the papers presented in various sessions of the conference. Papers included in the publication have undergone a light touch review and although an attempt has been to harmonise the style by adopting a common template, some deviations remain. The final versions of the papers as submitted by the authors have been included here. They have not undergone any language editing. Open access
  • Briefing paper: Pandemic Preparedness, Public Health and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) for Office of United Nations High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR) enquiry on good practices linked to WASH
    Briefing paper: Pandemic Preparedness, Public Health and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) for Office of United Nations High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR) enquiry on good practices linked to WASH Berghs, Maria; Tiwary, Abhishek; Bhattacharyya, Subhes; Matouq, Mohammed
  • A review of retrofit interventions for residential buildings in hot humid climates
    A review of retrofit interventions for residential buildings in hot humid climates Ayodele, Tunmise; Taki, A. H.; Oyinlola, M. A.; Bhattacharyya, Subhes Buildings consume 40% of resources around the world, low energy building is fast becoming a major component of sustainable development. However, limiting the concept of low energy buildings to new builds will only undermine its ef-fects and benefits as there are numerous existing buildings that consume uneconomical energy resources irrespective of how en-ergy efficient the new ones are. Therefore, retrofit interventions to existing buildings is important in decreasing resource con-sumption and increasing energy efficiency. Some various retro-fit interventions already exist towards reducing energy con-sumption in residential buildings but deciding on a specific ret-rofit intervention needs assiduous consideration. Hence, this pa-per focuses on the review of retrofit interventions and their en-ergy performances. It was found amongst others that clay bricks, sand line, and pre-fabricated walls consume less energy than concrete bricks by 16%, 23%, and 25% respectively. Elec-trochromic glazing system with no shading device was also found to have reduced heat gains by 53%-59% in winter and summer. It was concluded that further research would benefit from the combination of the various interventions to create pathways for building retrofit in hot humid climate, the path-ways can be tested with a dynamic thermal simulation software for energy performance. The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version.
  • Proceedings of the International Conference on Energising the SDGs through Appropriate Technology and Governance
    Proceedings of the International Conference on Energising the SDGs through Appropriate Technology and Governance Bhattacharyya, Subhes This volume presents the papers presented at the international conference on Energising the SDGs through appropriate technology and governance. Papers were presented in eight sessions. In addition, there was a keynote speech, a panel discussion, a workshop on Sustainability Compass and a lunch-time poster session. This compendium provides a summary of the event and includes original papers and posters delivered at the conference. These covered various themes, including climate action plan in UK and Japanese cities and their alignment with the SDGs; sustainable energy access; contribution of renewable energies, urban design and sustainable development goals, tools for evaluation and monitoring of progress with the SDGs, and innovations and business models for various services.
  • Marginalisation of Off-grid Energy Sector in Sri Lanka: What Lessons could be Learnt?
    Marginalisation of Off-grid Energy Sector in Sri Lanka: What Lessons could be Learnt? Sarangi, Gopal K; Pugazenthi, Pugazenthi; Mishra, A; Palit, D; Bhattacharyya, Subhes Renewable energy based off-grid projects have played a crucial role in Sri Lanka’s universal electrification effort. The paper in this context unravels two crucial and quite interrelated aspects of decentralised off-grid energy development in the country; i) to critically analyse the off-grid electricity sector development and assess its contribution to the universal electrification in the country, and ii) to examine the current challenges associated with the off-grid sector in the larger context of massive grid expansion. A mix of quantitative and qualitative research methods is employed as an analytical tool. The paper brings out several policy relevant findings. Strategic policy interventions coupled with targeted policy goals, robust community centric interventions, well designed credit systems, and well-structured capacity building initiatives are identified to be key leveraging points for success of off-grid micro-hydro projects. The techno-economic analysis of existing micro-hydro project reveals there exist opportunity for more productive use of such projects. Grid interconnection of off-grid energy projects is a major emerging challenge involving a whole gamut of technical, legal, regulatory, financial and social issues. Interestingly, the intensity of these challenges differs across ownership types. The file attached to this record is the author's final peer reviewed version. The Publisher's final version can be found by following the DOI link.
  • Analysing climate action plans of selected UK cities for their SDG alignment
    Analysing climate action plans of selected UK cities for their SDG alignment Ozawa-Meida, Leticia; Painter, B.; Bhattacharyya, Subhes In UK, the Climate change Act of 2008 has placed a binding target of reducing the net carbon emission in 2050 by at least 80% compared to the 1990 baseline. With a high share of urban population, the contribution of cities and urban areas towards climate change mitigation and adaptation becomes crucial. UK being a signatory to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) in 2016, there is a new emphasis on the sustainability of cities as well. In this paper, a preliminary analysis of climate action initiatives of three UK cities (Bristol, Leicester and Milton Keynes) and their alignment with the SDG is presented. We used a text mining approach to analyse the climate action plans and then use this to map the alignment with the SDGs. We find that climate action plans have not focused on the sustainable development goals or the SDGs and their focus remains limited mainly to mitigation activities through promotion of renewable energies at homes and in buildings and actions on transport. However, climate action plans could influence a significant number of SDGs and an integrated approach could be beneficial for the cities and their residents.
  • Implementation of analytic hierarchy process in evaluation of vulnerable critical oil and gas infrastructures to climate change impacts
    Implementation of analytic hierarchy process in evaluation of vulnerable critical oil and gas infrastructures to climate change impacts Udie, Justin; Bhattacharyya, Subhes; Ozawa-Meida, Leticia; Bhattacharyya, Subhes The Niger Delta oil and gas infrastructures are under severe threat of climate change impacts exacerbated by frequent flood activities, rising temperature, surging Atlantic tides, persistent heavy rainfall, and windstorms. This requires sustainable adaptation mechanisms to cope with vulnerabilities, but experts are challenged with the scale of vulnerability and ability to prioritise adaptation responses according to system criticality. Through a systematic review and synthesise of criticality assessment criteria, this paper applied multiple input analytic hierarchy process (Mi-AHP) in prioritising the criticality of seven stratified vulnerable infrastructures to ease adaptation planning. The result indicates that oil terminals, flow stations and roads/bridges are most critical infrastructures with an EV value = 0.27, 0.19, and 0.15 respectively. The result further indicated that transformers/high voltage cables are the fourth most critical systems obtaining EV = 0.14 while Pipelines, loading bays and wellheads were ranked fifth, sixth, and seventh with EV = 0.11, 0.09 and 0.05. Accordingly, the study emphasised the need for sustainable and pragmatic adaptation planning leveraging the outcome of the study to effectively manage and reduce the vulnerability of climate change impacts on oil and gas infrastructures in the Niger Delta.
  • Sustainability of community-owned mini-grids: Evidence from India
    Sustainability of community-owned mini-grids: Evidence from India Katre, A.; Tozzi, A.; Bhattacharyya, Subhes Background: Community-owned Solar Mini-Grids (SMGs) are increasingly promoted to provide communities access to reliable electricity, empowering local actors as they become active stakeholders in projects. However, early failures and difficulties in building local capacity have raised questions regarding their long-term sustainability and ability to be replicated to provide socio-economic benefits to the communities. This study assesses the sustainability of 24 community-owned SMGs in India operating over extensive periods of time using a novel scoring framework using mixed methods to derive its conclusions. Results: The study found that institutional, financial and technical capacities, central for the SMG’s long-term sustainability, could be achieved through community engagement from early stages, if communities are allowed freedom to develop governance procedures while at the same time clarifying roles and responsibilities. This creates strong sense of ownership that is key for effective and inclusive governance. User satisfaction, ensured through provision of usable supply in line with users’ expectations, motivates actors to make regular payments, thus leading to economic sustenance. While social and environmental benefits were observed, energy consumption and engagement in productive activities remained marginal. Conclusions: The study reports an example of community-owned SMG model that has been replicated sustainably over many cases, overcoming key challenges related to appropriate financial and technical management and producing positive social impact. Low engagement in productive activities was more a factor of the local socio-cultural contexts, rather than limited paying capacities of the users. To increase energy utilization and create environments for sustainable rural living the study recommends implementation of systems that link energy with other rural development needs such as agriculture or water provision. The study also recommends more use of qualitative and quantitative data for impact analysis to ensure that conclusions are generalizable and provide rich contextual explanations for the observed phenomena. open access journal

Click here to view a full listing of Subhes C Bhattacharyya's publications and outputs.

Key research outputs

  • Rural Electrification through Decentralised Off-grid Systems in Developing Countries, (Ed.) S.C. Bhattacharyya, Springer, ISBN 978-1-4471-4673-5, 297p, 2013
  • Energy access programmes and sustainable development: A critical review and analysis, Energy for Sustainable Development, 16(3):260-71
  • Integration of wind power into the British system in 2020, Energy – the International Journal, (with Ngoc Anh Le), 36(10): 5975-83, 2011
  • Changes in the GHG emission intensity in EU-15: Lessons from a decomposition analysis, Energy – International Journal, 35(8), pp. 3315-22, 2010 (with W. Matsumura)
  • <start_e>Electricity capacity expansion in Thailand: An analysis of gas dependence and fuel import reliance, Energy, 33(5), pp. 712-23, 2008 (with Thanawat Nakawiro and Bundit Limmeechokchai).

Research interests/expertise

Subhes’ interest in energy research includes the following:

<start_a> a)   Energy Access and Sustainable living in developing countries

  • Research to identify ways of supplying energy to the bottom billion and supporting sustainable living in developing countries. 
  • Strategies and enabling conditions for the provision of clean and affordable energy for the poor.
  • Sustainability analysis and development impacts of energy interventions for rural development.
  • Vulnerability and mitigation of climate and security of energy supply in developing countries and their impact on sustainable development. 

<start_b> b)   Policy issues

  • Low carbon energy pathways in developing countries - covering resource-rich and resource poor countries.
  • Energy pricing, taxation and subsidies in developing countries for supporting sustainable energy in developing countries
  • Policies for fossil fuels and renewable energies.

 c)   Energy modelling

  • Modelling energy demand in developing countries: Energy Demand analysis and demand management - in industry, transport and residential sectors.
  • Extension of the index decomposition methodology – This is an area of was applied to an analysis of climate change analysis
  • Electricity system expansion studies for conventional studies and to capture vulnerability and energy security aspects.

Areas of teaching

  • Energy and Sustainable Development
  • Energy Economics
  • Energy Regulation
  • Oil and gas economics

Qualifications

Subhes holds a PhD and an Advanced Masters degree in Applied Economics with specialisation in Energy Economics from the University Pierre Mendes France, Grenoble II, Grenoble, France. He also holds a Master of Engineering in Energy Planning and Policy from the Asian Institute of Technology, Bangkok, Thailand and a Bachelor of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering from Bengal Engineering College, University of Calcutta, India.

Courses taught

Subhes teaches a course on Sustainable Development at the graduate level and a course in Energy Economics for the undergraduate students.

He has taught the following courses as part of his earlier employments:

Energy Economics – the tools, Energy Economics – the Issues, Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development, Economics of regulation and restructuring of energy industries, Petroleum Policy and Economics (for distance learning), Energy Data Analysis, Energy Demand Analysis and Forecasting, Oil and Gas Economics, and Economics of Energy Projects.

Honours and awards

1. Green Gown Award International 2015 - for Community Innovation for OASYS South Asia Project given by Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges, UK.

2. Green Gown Award National 2015 - for Community Innovation for OASYS South Asia Project given by Environmental Association for Universities and Colleges, UK.

 

Membership of external committees

Member of EPSRC Peer Review Panel – since 2009.

Member of Energy Institute College - since 2015.

Membership of professional associations and societies

  1. Fellow, Royal Society of Arts (FRSA)
  2. Fellow, Energy Institute (FEI)
  3. Senior Fellow, Higher Education Academy (SrF HEA)
  4. Institute of Engineers (India) life member.

Projects

Project details

Funding agency

Period

Role

Assessing opportunities and challenges for supporting   mini-grids in India to reduce Energy poverty

DFID

6 months, January to June 2016

Research Leader

Global Innovation Initiative – Consortium for Rapid Smart   Grid Impact

US Department of State

2014-2016

Co-Principal Investigator

Nexus Network Think Piece

Nexus Network (ESRC funded)

2013

Principal Investigator

Agent-based Modelling of Electricity Networks

EPSRC

20013-2016

Co-Investigator

Energy Brief

World Health Organisation

2012-2013

Principal Investigator

OASYS South Asia – Business Models for off-grid   electrification in South Asia

EPSRC and DFID

2009-2015

Principal Investigator

Review of Energy Demand Forecasting models

The World Bank

2009-2010

Consultant

Restructuring of Thai Electricity Industry

EGAT, Thailand

2002-2003

Co-Investigator

GNESD Energy Access Study

Global Network on Energy for Sustainable Development

2002-2003

Co-Principal Investigator

CD4CDM – Capacity building for CDM in Asian region

UNEP-Risoe

2002-2003

Co-Principal Investigator

Consultancy work

Subhes’ areas of expertise for consulting purposes include energy pricing, energy regulation, energy access, off-grid electrification, renewable energy policies, etc.

Subhes has worked with consulting firms like PricewaterhouseCoopers (India), National Economic Research Associates (NERA) and Development Consultants Limited (India). He has also worked as a short-term consultant for the World Bank.

Current research students

Subhes is supervising a number of students first supervisor and a few others as second supervisors. The following are a list of projects being investigated by these students:

1) Vulnerability assessment of oil and gas infrastructure to climate change impact in the Niger Delta;

2) Managing the structure, regulation and infrastructure investment decisions in the natural gas industry in Ghana;

3) Monetisation of natural gas resources in Nigeria

4) Analysis of agricultural practices for environmental protection and management of the rural Red River Delta region of Vietnam;

5) Impact of human activity on protected areas: Case of Nech Sar National Park in Ethiopia

6) Impact of climate change on the youth of small island communities

7) Low carbon retrofitting of residential buildings in Nigeria;

8) Smart demand-side and supply-side solutions to manage peak electricity demand from the residential sector of Saudi Arabia       

Externally funded research grants information

Decentralised off-grid electricity generation in developing countries: Business

models for off-grid electricity supply – RCUK (EPSRC – DfID), Research, Start date: 21/10/2009, end date 20/10/2014; PI of the project; Collaborators – School of Environment and Development, Manchester University, Edinburgh Napier University, University of Dundee, The Energy and Resources Institute and TERI University (India).

 

Agent-based Modelling of Electricity Networks, Co-Investigator, EPSRC, 2013-2016.

 

Global Innovation Initiative – Consortium for Rapid Smart Grid Impact, Co-PI, US Department of State, 2014-2018.

Professional esteem indicators

Subhes was the Co-Editor of International Journal of Energy Sector Management since its inception in 2007 until end of 2012.

He is now an Associate Editor of Energy for Sustainable Development – since 2012. He is also in the Editorial Board of Environmental Research Letters and AIMS Energy.

He is a member of EPSRC Peer Review College and Energy Institute College. He reviews grant applications, application for promotion to academic positions, and book proposals for publishers on a regular basis.

He was an external examiner of MSc Taught Programmes in the Business School of the University of Aberdeen (and CASS Business School, City University London.

 

Subhes-Bhattacharyya