Solar power set to get a major boost

Modi to announce a mega initiative on setting up of an International Solar Alliance with French President Hollande on January 25

Solar power set to get a major boost

International Solar Alliance (ISA) is an Indian initiative and is an alliance of 121 solar resource rich countries lying fully or partially between the tropic of Cancer and tropic of Capricorn.

In a significant move, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Francois Hollande will jointly announce the setting up of a specialized platform that will contribute towards India’s goal of promoting solar energy generation from a mere 2500 mw in 2015 to an ambitious one lakh mega watt over by 2020,

Modi and Hollande —who is also India’s chief guest at the Republic Day Parade— will jointly lay the foundation stone of International Solar Alliance (ISA) Headquarters and inaugurate the interim Secretariat of ISA at National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE) in Gurgaon on January 25. Union minister of state for power, coal and renewable energy, Piyush Goyal who has been instrumental in shaping this initiative will be present at stone laying ceremony.

Hollande is arriving in India on the afternoon of January 24th for a three day visit to India starting from Chandigarh. He will be holding bilateral meetings with Prime Minister Modi at the Hyderabad House on January 25th and will leave back for Paris after attending the Republic Day parade on the evening of January 26.Hollande will be arriving in Chandigarh on a three-day visit to India on the afternoon of January 24.

4 MW horizontal single axis tracker in Vellakoil, Tamil Nadu
4 MW horizontal single axis tracker in Vellakoil, Tamil Nadu

ISA was jointly launched by the Prime Minister of India and the President of France on 30 November 2015 at Paris, France on the side-lines of the 21st Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Representatives from around 70 countries including more than 30 Heads of the States and Heads of the Government level participated in the ISA launch ceremony.

The International Steering Committee (ISC) of the ISA has met two times on December, 1, 2015 at Paris, France and January 18, 2016 at Abu Dhabi, UAE. The committee identified development of a focused road map for ISA and plan for involvement of national government, private sector, financing institutions and others in ISA activities and structure as important action points.

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According to Secretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Upendra Tripathy, ISA will be a major international body headquartered in India.

“It will be a new beginning for accelerating development and deployment of solar energy for achieving universal energy access and energy security of the present and future generations.”

In its effort is to build an Iconic structure for ISA Secretariat, India has offered to host ISA at the premises of NISE and has offered 5 acre land. In addition, a contribution of Rs 100 crore (around US $15 million) has also been offered by India for creating ISA corpus fund.

Besides, this, India has also offered training support for ISA member countries at the National Institute of Solar Energy and also support to ISA member countries for demonstration projects for solar home lighting, solar pumps for farmers and for other solar applications.

ISA has been envisioned as a specialized platform and will contribute towards the common goal of increasing utilization and promotion of solar energy and solar applications in its member countries.

The Paris declaration on International Solar Alliance states that the countries share the collective ambition to undertake innovative and concerted efforts for reducing the cost of finance and cost of technology for immediate deployment of competitive solar generation, financial instruments to mobilise more than US$1000 Billion of investments needed by 2030 for the massive deployment of affordable solar energy and to pave the way for future solar generation, storage and good technologies for countries’ individual needs.

An Interim Administrative Cell (IAC) has already been set up in the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Government of India. The IAC will facilitate establishment of ISA and its transformation from de facto to de jure status, pending the creation, constitution and full-scale functioning of ISA in a prescribed manner. In order to develop programme of activities of ISA, discussions have also been held with ISA countries resident diplomatic missions, United Nations, World Bank, Exim Banks, New Development Bank, United Nations Asia Pacific Centre for Technology Transfer, and also with the corporate sector.

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Hollande will also be the chief guest for Republic Day 2016

France had agreed to support India’s plans to set up this international solar alliance aimed at promoting access to low-carbon energy. Close to 190 countries have been working towards a legally binding and universal agreement on climate, which aims to keep a check on global warming by cutting down on carbon emissions and embracing green technology