International Solar Alliance | UPSC | Power, Functions | Why In The News ?
Germany becomes 5th country to sign International Solar Alliance Framework Agreement after amendments to open its membership to all member states of the United Nations.
Source : NewsonAir
About International Solar Alliance :
- The International Solar Alliance (ISA) is an alliance of 121 countries initiated by India, most of them being sunshine countries, which lie either completely or partly between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn.
- The primary objective of the alliance is to work for efficient exploitation of solar energy to reduce dependence on fossil fuels.
- The alliance is also called International Agency for Solar Policy and Application (IASPA).
- This initiative was first proposed by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
- The alliance is a treaty-based inter-governmental organization. Countries that do not fall within the Tropics can join the alliance and enjoy all benefits as other members, with the exception of voting rights. After the United Nations, it is the largest grouping of states world-wide.
- It is headquartered in India ( Gurugram ) .
The interests and objectives of the ISA are as follows:
- To collectively address key common challenges to scale up solar energy applications in line with their needs.
- To mobilize investments of more than USD 1000 billion by 2030.
- To take coordinated action through programmes and activities launched on a voluntary basis, aimed at better harmonization, aggregation of demand, risk and resources, for promoting solar finance, solar technologies, innovation, R&D, capacity building etc.
- Reduce the cost of finance to increase investments in solar energy in member countries by promoting innovative financial mechanisms and mobilizing finance from Institutions.
- Scale up applications of solar technologies in member countries.
- Facilitate collaborative research and development (R&D) activities in solar energy technologies among member countries.
- Promote a common cyber platform for networking, cooperation and exchange of ideas among member countries.
What are the advantages of ISA?
- It will give the desired push towards clean energy when the world is reeling under the impact of climate change due to pollution from energy generating plants like coal etc.
- The Alliance has a 24×7 Solar Cyber Centre.
- This will give open access to all nations for advice and information on many projects and financial innovation.
- The Alliance can also play an advocacy role in asking the financial institutions to offer a part of their lending for solar energy.
- This is like what the Reserve Bank did in India – up to 15 crore investment in the field of renewable energy is a priority sector lending. And, up to 10 lakh is a priority sector lending for rooftop solar panels.
Advantages for India:
- This could position India as an energy leader of sun-rich developing countries
- It showcases India as a strong contender internationally and could generate job opportunities of a global nature.
- The ISA could be the beginning of more macro-level analysis and discussions of international energy markets, rather than just focussing on Indian policies or domestic policies.
- India lacks adequate infrastructure for solar energy.
- Further, the cost of solar power is not yet commercially viable.
- To reach its desired target of 100GW of solar power, ISA can help fund the capacity addition and make solar power commercially viable.
- It can also adopt best practices in renewable energy.
India Solar Energy Capacity :
- Solar power in India is a fast developing industry as part of the renewable energy in India.
- The country’s solar installed capacity was 40.09 GW as of 31 March 2021.
- The Indian government had an initial target of 20 GW capacity for 2022, which was achieved four years ahead of schedule.