The Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi, today inaugurated the first Assembly of the International Solar Alliance at Vigyan Bhawan. The same event also marked the inauguration of the second IORA Renewable Energy Ministerial Meeting, and the 2nd Global RE-Invest (Renewable Energy Investors’ Meet and Expo). The Secretary General of the United Nations, Mr. Antonio Guterres, was present on the occasion.
Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister said that in the last 150 to 200 years, mankind has depended on fossil fuels for energy needs. He said nature is now indicating that options such as solar, wind and water, offer more sustainable energy solutions. In this context, he expressed confidence that in future, when people talk of organisations for the welfare of mankind established in the 21st century, the International Solar Alliance will be at the top of the list. He said this is a great forum to work towards ensuring climate justice. He said the International Solar Alliance could replace OPEC as the key global energy supplier in the future.
The Prime Minister said that the effect of increased use of renewable energy is now visible in India. He added that India is working towards the goals of the Paris Agreement through an action plan. He said that the target is to generate 40 percent of India’s total energy requirements in 2030, by non fossil fuel based sources. He said India is developing with a new self-confidence of “Poverty to Power.”
The Prime Minister said that besides solar and wind power, India is working on biomass, biofuel and bio-energy. He said efforts are being made to make India’s transport system clean fuel based. He said that by converting bio-waste to biofuel, India is converting a challenge into an opportunity. He emphasized that if the dream of “One World, One Sun and One Grid” is followed, uninterrupted power supply can be ensured.
Mr. Modi announced plans to launch a National Energy Storage Mission that will look at manufacturing, deployment, technology development and policy framework.
Addressing the gathering, Secretary General of United Nations, Mr. Antonio Guterres said that climate change is an existential threat for all. He emphasized that the International Solar Alliance represents the future of energy scenario the world over. Pointing out that the world is witnessing a global renewable energy revolution, the UN Secretary General hoped that the age of fossil fuels will end with a replacement for them. Mr. Guterres said that he would convene a Climate Summit next December to bring climate action to the top of international agenda.
Speaking on the occasion, Union Minister of External Affairs, Ms. Sushma Swaraj said that the International Solar Alliance is an endearing reality. She pointed out that the goal of the three events inaugurated today is to promote sustainable development for a better world.
A short film on the ‘Journey of Renewable Energy in India” was screened. Another film on Student Initiative on Solar Lamp was also shown on the occasion. 100 students from various schools lit the Solar Study Lamp at the inaugural function.
Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Renewable Energy and Power, Mr. R.K Singh presented saplings to the dignitaries on the occasion. Mr. R.K Singh also delivered the vote of thanks.
The Business and Technical Sessions of ISA Assembly, IORA Meet and RE-INVEST 2018 Expo will be held at India Expo Mart, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh from October 3-5, 2018.
INTERNATIONAL SOLAR ALLIANCE
International Solar Alliance (ISA), an alliance of 121 solar resource rich countries lying fully or partially between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn. ISA was jointly launched by the Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi, and the then President of France, Mr. François Hollande, on November 30, 2015 in Paris, France on the side-lines of the 21st Conference of Parties (CoP 21) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. The ISA Framework Agreement was opened for signature on 15 November 2016 in Marrakech, Morocco, on the side-lines of CoP-22.
The vision and mission of the International Solar Alliance is to provide a dedicated platform for cooperation among solar resource rich countries that lie completely or partial between the Tropics of Capricorn & Cancer, the global stakeholders, including bilateral and multilateral organizations, corporates, and industry to make a positive contribution to assist and help achieve the common goals of increasing the use of solar energy in meeting energy needs of prospective ISA member countries in a safe, convenient, affordable, equitable and sustainable manner.
In conformity with the ISA Framework Agreement, 30 days after ratification by the 15th country, on December 6, 2017, ISA became the first full-fledged treaty based international intergovernmental organization headquartered in India. Through this initiative, the countries, inter alia, share the collective ambition: (i) to address obstacles that stand in the way of rapid and massive scale-up of solar energy; (ii) to undertake innovative and concerted efforts for reducing the cost of finance and cost of technology for immediate deployment of competitive solar generation; and (iii) to mobilise more than 1000 Billion US Dollars of investments by 2030. The Government of India has committed Rs.175 crore for setting up of ISA and till date released a sum of Rs 145 crore for creating a corpus fund, building infrastructure and meeting day to day recurring expenditure.
On March 11, 2018, the Prime Minister of India, Shri Narendra Modi and the President of France, Mr. Emmanuel Macron co-hosted the founding conference of the International Solar Alliance (ISA). 48 countries, including 25 Heads of States participated in this conference. In addition, there were representations from the United Nations, multilateral development banks, energy-related think tanks, corporate sector and civil society.
The Delhi Solar Agenda, adopted in the Founding Conference of the ISA, states that the ISA member States inter-alia have agreed to pursue an increased share of solar energy in the final energy consumption in respective national energy mix, as a means of tackling global challenges of climate change and as a cost-effective solution by supporting and implementing policy initiatives and participation of all relevant stakeholders, as applicable, in respective States.
Till date, out of 121 prospective member countries that lie either fully or partially between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, 70 countries have signed the Framework Agreement of the ISA. 44 of these countries have ratified the ISA treaty.
The first Assembly, in a way, will lay the foundation for global Solar Agenda. The Assembly, as supreme decision making body of the ISA, will steer the process to significantly harness solar energy for achieving universal energy access at affordable rates. The Assembly will adjudicate upon various administrative, financial and programme related issues. Hon’ble Ministers from ISA countries have been invited for the Assembly. The countries that have ratified the ISA Treaty Framework will attend the Assembly as Members. Countries that have signed but are yet to ratify the ISA Treaty Framework will attend the Assembly as Observers. Till date, 75 country delegations have confirmed participation. This includes 36 member countries, 24 observer countries, 12 prospective member countries and 3 partner country. Ministerial level participation has been confirmed from 22 member countries, 10 observer countries and 3 prospective member countries.
THE INDIAN OCEAN RIM ASSOCIATION
The Indian Ocean Rim Association was set up with the objective of strengthening regional cooperation and sustainable development within the Indian Ocean Region with 21 Member States and 7 Dialogue Partners. India will be hosting 2nd IORA Renewable Energy Ministerial meet. In this meeting, Ministers from 9 member countries and delegates from all 21 member countries are expected to participate. India, Australia, Iran, Indonesia Thailand, Malaysia, South Africa, Mozambique, Kenya, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Bangladesh, Singapore, Mauritius, Madagascar, UAE, Yemen, Seychelles, Somalia, Comoros and Oman are members of IORA.
The 2nd RE-INVEST aims at accelerating the worldwide effort to scale up renewable energy and connect the global investment community with Indian energy stakeholders. 2nd RE-INVEST will include a three-day Conference on renewables, cleantech and future energy choices, and an Expo of renewables-related manufacturers, developers, investors and innovators.
The 2nd RE-INVEST will provide a great opportunity to various countries, states, business houses & organisations to showcase their business strategies, achievements and expectations. It would facilitate collaboration and cooperation with key stakeholders in India, which has today emerged as one of the world’s largest renewable energy markets.
The 2nd RE-INVEST is expected to be attended by Ministerial Delegations from across the world including ISA and IORA Member Countries, over 600 global industry leaders, and 10,000 delegates. 15 Indian states will participate, there will be 7 focused country presentations, and over 150 speakers including 55 international speakers from 15 countries will speak at the event. RE-INVEST includes 50 plenary and technical sessions, a special Chief Ministerial plenary session, exhibition with over 100 exhibiting companies, and focused sessions on Start-ups and Human Resource Development.
Globally, India stands 5th in renewable power, 4th in wind power and 5th in solar power installed capacity. India is one of the world’s largest green energy markets, with exponential increase in demand and supply. Renewable energy development and deployment has received proactive policy support, including 100% foreign investment. The Government of India is aiming to exceed the set target of 175 GW renewable energy capacity by 2022.
RE-Invest is a global platform to explore strategies for development and deployment of renewables. It showcases India’s green energy market and the Government’s efforts to scale up capacity to meet the national energy demand in socially, economically and ecologically sustainable ways. The 2nd Global RE-Invest will build upon the success of RE-Invest 2015 and provide an international forum to established players as well as new segments of investors and entrepreneurs to engage, ideate and innovate.