International Solar Alliance Current Affairs

World Bank: India emerging as front-runner in fight against Climate Change

The World Bank has observed that India is emerging as a frontrunner in the fight against climate change. It has noted that India is gradually replacing coal energy with solar power as a source of energy.

Salient Facts

The World Bank has observed that India has made a sweeping commitment to solar power, innovative solutions and energy efficiency initiatives to provide round the clock electricity to its people by 2030. With these initiatives and a firm decision to use more clean energy, India has emerged as the front-runner in the global fight against climate change.

The report of the World Bank had also praised India for walking away from plans to install nearly 14 GW of coal-fired power plants in order to use solar power to generate electricity as it is affordable for the country now to use solar power instead of fossil fuels. The expense involved in generating electricity from solar photovoltaic (PV) is at present a quarter of what it was in 2009 and is also predicted to fall another 66% by 2040. India gets 300 days of sunshine every year and has one of the best conditions in the world to capture and use solar energy.

India has set an ambitious target for generating 160 gigawatts (GW) of the wind and solar power by 2022. It would help India to help its population to light their homes, study at night, provide families with refrigerators to preserve food items. In addition, it would also act as an incentive for international firms to invest in India’s solar market.

Background

India has begun promoting the use of solar power on a large scale in place of fossil fuels in order to honour its climate change commitments. On the first day of the COP-21 summit, the International Solar Alliance was launched by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Francois Hollande as a union of countries with abundant sunlight. Under this alliance, 121 countries that fall within the tropics {i.e. between Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn} have been invited to make collaborative efforts to harness solar energy to generate the electricity. Most of these countries fall within Asia, Africa and South America. There are three objectives behind the International Solar Alliance. First is to force down prices by driving demand; second is to bring standardisation in solar technologies and third is to foster research and development.

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Nauru Ratifies International Solar Alliance Framework Pact

The tiny island of Nauru which is the world’s smallest republic has become the sixth country to ratify the International Solar Alliance (ISA) Framework pact. Still five more nations namely the Comoros, Cote d’Ivoire, Somalia, Ghana and Djibouti have committed to ink the International Solar Alliance Framework Pact in the ongoing annual meeting of the African Development bank in Gandhinagar. This is the first time that India is hosting the annual meetings of the AfDB and its sister institutions. India had joined the African Development Bank (AfDB) in 1983.

Nauru

Nauru is a tiny island republic in Micronesia located in the northeast of Australia. Nauru has a population of 10,200-odd individuals. The highest point in the island measures only 65 metres above sea level. Hence, the island remains vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change. Nauru has a hot and humid climate and normally don’t experience cyclones. Around 30% of the country’s power needs are met through solar power installations. The tiny republic has set a target for attaining 50% of energy production from renewable sources by 2020.

ISA

On the first day of the COP-21 summit, the International Solar Alliance was launched by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Francois Hollande as a union of countries with abundant sunlight. Under this alliance, 121 countries that fall within the tropics {i.e. between Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn} have been invited to make collaborative efforts to harness solar energy to generate the electricity. Most of these countries fall within Asia, Africa and South America.There are three objectives behind the International Solar Alliance. First is to force down prices by driving demand; second is to bring standardization in solar technologies and third is to foster research and development.

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