Daily Management Review

India leads 120 Country Alliance to a Global Solar Alliance Program at Paris Climate Summit


India leads 120 Country Alliance to a Global Solar Alliance Program at Paris Climate Summit
An international solar alliance of over 120 countries was launched by India’s prime minister Narendra Modi along with the French president Francoise Hollande at the Paris COP21 climate summit.
Hopes for future prosperity in the developing world now rested on bold initiatives, as fossil fuels put the planet in peril, Modi told a press conference in Paris.  
“Solar technology is evolving, costs are coming down and grid connectivity is improving. The dream of universal access to clean energy is becoming more real. This will be the foundation of the new economy of the new century,” he said.
Describing the solar alliance as “the sunrise of hope” Modi said that the solar alliance would “not just for clean energy but for villages and homes still in darkness, for mornings and evening filled with a clear view of the glory of the sun.”
The group had been called a “a true game changer” by France’s climate change ambassador Laurence Tubiana earlier.
Several European countries are also on board with the initiative, including France, even though most of the signatory nations mostly hailed from the tropics.
Mobilising public finance from richer states to help deliver universal energy access, Hollande described the project as climate justice in action.
 “What we are putting in place is an avante garde of countries that believe in renewable energies,” he told a press conference in Paris.
“What we are showing here is an illustration of the future Paris accord, as this initiative gives meaning to sharing technology and mobilizing financial resources in an example of what we wish to do in the course of the climate conference,” Hollande added.
$30m (£20m) will be spent by the Indian government in setting up the alliance’s headquarters in India. The eventual goal is to raise $400m from membership fees, and international agencies.
Areva, Engie, Enel, HSBC France and Tata Steel are the companies that are involved in the project.
 “It is very, very exciting to see India nailing its colors to the mast and providing leadership on this issue,” said James Watson, the director of SolarPower Europe, which represents the continents’ solar photovoltaic industry.
“It will mean more opportunities for solar across the world and that can only be positive for combating climate change,” Watson added.
The achieving universal access to sustainable energy by 2030 which was set in 2011, the body’s sustainable development goals, was the context that UN secretary general Ban Ki-Moon placed the initiative in.
“This bold effort could bring affordable solar power to tropical villages and communities worldwide,” said Jennifer Morgan, the director of the World Research Institute’s climate programme.
India offered to draw 40% of its electricity from renewables by 2030 at the Paris summit. With 1.45bn people, the country is projected to be the world’s most populous by then.
Climate Action Tracker described the promise as being “at the least ambitious end of what would be a fair contribution”, and not consistent with meeting a 2C target.
Earlier, US and 18 other countries pledged to provide $20bn for clean energy research by 2020, a doubling of current funding commitments.
Bill Gates and the Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg also launched a separate 'Breakthrough energy coalition', which will act as an investment platform for clean energy projects.
As a part of a plan to make the city a global clean energy center, on Sunday, Dubai announced a Dh 100 bn ($27 bn) program to make solar panels mandatory for all rooftop buildings by 2030. Dubai aims to generate 25% of its energy from clean sources by 2030, rising to 75% by 2050.