ISA plans to create a corpus of $1,000 million by 2025

ISA plans to create a corpus of $1,000 million by 2025: Upendra Tripathy

Image result for upendra tripathyInternational Solar Alliance (ISA) is aiming to become self sustainable soon. Launched in 2015 on the sidelines of COP21, the alliance is implementing demand aggregation model to make large scale solar projects economically viable. Upendra Tripathy, Director General, ISA in an exclusive interaction with Ankush Kumar (ET Energy World) talks about the group’s key initiatives and long term plans. Edited excerpts.. 

Could you give us a break-up of the funds that you have raised so far? 
We have got a working budget of up to $4.5 million to be utilized until December this year. This money has come from the interest of the donations made by our partners. The government of India has given around $16 million to ISA which has been deposited in State Bank of India (SBI) and is giving around 7 per cent interest. Chinese solar company CLP has given us $1 million. SoftBank has given us $2 million. Indian PSUs and government organisations like SECIIREDA, NTPC, REC, PGCIL, CIL, PFC, ITPO have given us $1 million each. All of this works out to around $11 million. Therefore, with contribution from India which is 16 million and this $11 million we have a total of around $27 million. On all these donations we are getting an interest of around 7 per cent.

What is the future outlook on funding arrangements? 
The Government of India gave us $16 million in 2016 and it is giving $2.5 million every year for five years. The government has been giving us money for the past three years and that will stop after two years. As a host country, the government of India had initially promised up to Rs 400 crore. There are other global institutions we are able to attract investment from. The World Bank has given us $0.5 million and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) is planning to give us $2 million. The European Union has given $300,000 to build Infopedia. It is an information platform which will have three parts. First, it will have 1,000 solar videos, then there will be a country counter where each country will showcase what best it has to offer for the industry. The third aspect is a communication platform where ministers, scientists, experts from 121 member countries can interact.

How much corpus do you think will be sufficient for ISA to become financially stable? What is the return on investment for the companies who donates to ISA? Do they have decision-making power too? 
Our long-term plan is to create a corpus of $1,000 million by 2025 with contributions which will give us an interest of up to $40million. So, once we have a corpus like this we will not need a membership fee. Once an organisation donates the money they can not take part in any decision on how ISA is utilizing it. As far as benefits to the companies for donating to ISA are concerned, we are open to provide the platform for engagements with our member countries which can be beneficial to them in many ways. Recently, the minister of Cuba wanted to meet all our corporate partners and we have facilitated that. Suppose the corporate partners have any issue with any country we can directly communicate to the minister in a particular country. We have a dedicated desk for the corporate partners. If they have any legal issues in any part of the world, we forward it to our national focal contact in that country.

You had earlier talked about an aggregation model for pitching large scale projects in other nations. How does this model work and what could be the core benefits? 
Beginning next month, we are going to organise a meeting of our partners. The idea is to actively engage and promote the ISA agenda which talks about pitching for large scale projects like home lighting systems and solar cookers by using the demand aggregation model. Through this, we aim to bring the cost of a home lighting system close to what a family pays for kerosene oil. Otherwise they will not buy. Through this aggregation model of demand, risk and capital, we can achieve universal energy access. We also need to establish institutions like a world solar bank which can be dedicated to providing financial assistance for solar projects.

Solid waste management is a critical area for sustainability. Do you think ISA, being a large and global organisation, can help in building a universal procedure for waste management?
We are trying to recommend to every member country that for every solar unit they generate, they should levy 0.001 per cent of that cost as cess and this should be accumulated as a solar fund. This fund should be used to treat solar waste as it gets generated. In 25 years, all these solar panels will be waste. So, the best thing is to prepare it for now. We will recommend to all these solar countries to create a solar waste fund and levy a sub-charge on solar electricity. We believe that the present generation, which is using solar energy, should make the future generations ready for this solar revolution.

Courtesy – ETEnergyWorld |By-Ankush Kumar | New Delhi | April 19, 2019

Climate negotiators on final stretch in Paris

Climate negotiators on final stretch in Paris


Raising global climate ambition to confine future temperature rise to 1.5°C over the 2°C aimed for so far is a laudable goal, but needs a sharp reallocation of the available carbon budget and massive funds and technology transfers with particular reference to India, a group of researchers said.WALK THE TALK: Activists at the Paris Climate Conference say the need for 1.5 degrees is favoured by many, but funds for vulnerable nations is not forthcoming. Photo: G. Ananthakrishnan

Climate negotiators are now in their finals two days of deliberations, actively considering the inclusion of the 1.5°C target in the Paris Agreement. The most vulnerable countries such as the Small Island Developing States and Least Developed Countries have been campaigning for that goal, and the G77+China as well as the BASIC group have said they are looking at the feasibility of that target.

However, pegging temperature rise at 1.5° with a high level of probability would involve a reduction in the carbon budget –– the amount of carbon dioxide that can be emitted in the atmosphere in the future. That would mean tremendous impacts for India, and transfer not just of a significant part of the carbon budget to emerging economies but a massive enhancement of financial and technological assistance. The US and the EU would consume 128 Gt CO2 between 2011 and 2030, and the estimated impact of all the INDCs for a better than even chance of confining warming to 1.5 degrees C, the total carbon budget of about 550 Gt between 2011 and 2100, would be exhausted well before 2030. India most likely would emit only 58 Gt CO2 until 2030 – 10.5 per cent of the available budget of 550 Gt CO2.

In a joint statement, T. Jayaraman, Professor, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Anand Patwardhan, Professor, University of Maryland and IIT-Bombay and Chandra Bhushan, Deputy Director General, Centre for Science and Environment pointed to the fact that even for a 2° C ambition the voluntary pledges of the developed countries (INDCs) “fall well short of their fair shares; and very significant additional finance and technology support for developing countries is needed. We, therefore, would like to first see an agreement on all elements that credibly deliver on 2° C in a fair and equitable manner. After that, negotiators need to chalk out a plan about what more needs to be done to raise the ambition to 1.5° C. In the absence of real commitments, even 2° target has no real significance.”

The following is the text of the statement:

At the Paris climate conference, there is growing momentum for tightening the global goal from 2 degrees C to 1.5 degrees C – a target that may better help the world avoid the worst effects of climate change. Developed countries have openly given their support to this goal; India and China have also shown their willingness to consider this temperature goal.

While we welcome this increase in ambition, we would like to draw the attention of the climate negotiators to the need to allocate the remaining carbon budget in a fair manner to all countries so that there is a chance for meeting this temperature target.

We would also like to emphasis the fact that meeting this temperature goal would require massive enhancement of financial and technological support from the developed countries to the developing countries so that they are able to move quickly onto low-carbon development pathways. In addition, developed countries will have to significantly increase the level of their own efforts and reach net zero emissions in the next 5-10 years. In the absence of such commitments, a 1.5 degrees C temperature target would remain a hollow shell – devoid of any real significance.

Practicality of 1.5O C temperature goal

As per the Fifth Assessment report of IPCC (AR5), for a 50% probability of limiting temperature increase to 1.5 degrees C, the total carbon dioxide emissions allowed from 2011 till 2100 amount to 550 gigatonnes (Gt) of CO2. For a 33% probability of keeping temperature increase below 1.5 degrees C, the corresponding figure for cumulative emissions is 850 Gt CO2. But if the world wants to raise the certainty of meeting this temperature goal to 66%, then the budget shrinks to a mere 400 Gt CO2.

The UNFCCC’s “Synthesis report on the aggregate effect of the intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs)” estimates that the global carbon dioxide emissions for 2011-2025 will aggregate to 542 Gt CO2 and for 2011-2030 will aggregate to 748 Gt CO2.

Comparing the existing INDC’s to the available budget indicates that for a better than even chance of meeting the 1.5 degrees C target, the remaining carbon budget is exhausted well before 2030 (see Table below).

Table: CO2 emissions corresponding to 1.5 deg C (Giga tonnes of CO2)

Probability 66% 50% 33%
Budget (2011-2100) 400 550 850
Consumption till 2025 542 542 542
Consumption till 2030 748 748 748
Balance (Budget – 2030 consumption) (-) 348 (-) 198 102

Who will appropriate how much carbon space?

The US and the EU would consume 128 Gt CO2 between 2011 and 2030. If we take available carbon space to be 550 Gt CO2 (for a 50% probability of staying below 1.5OC) then the EU and the US alone will consume 23% of the budget. Annex-I countries as a whole would emit 187 Gt CO2 between 2011-2030 – 34% of the total budget.

India most likely would be emitting only 58 Gt CO2 until 2030 – 10.5% of the available budget of 550 Gt CO2. Even at higher growth rates of GDP (using the figure quoted by the Indian government in its INDC), this may go up to 87 Gt CO2 — 16% of the budget of 550 Gt CO2. India’s emissions would, therefore, be less than half of the Annex 1 countries, though India has approximately the same population as all Annex 1 countries combined together. The developed countries under the current dispensation would continue to misappropriate the remaining carbon space even in the future.

Need to allocate carbon budget and need for massive investments

Currently there are no limits on how much countries can emit. We need limits so that countries individually and the world collectively remain within the available carbon space.

But the carbon space for a 1.5 degrees C target is so limited that developed countries will have to reach net zero emissions in next 5-10 years. Developing countries will have some more time, but their development space will be so constrained that they will need massive support in terms of finance, technologies and capacity so that they are able to meet their basic development and poverty alleviation needs while remaining within the available carbon budget.

We would like to point to the fact that even for 2 degrees C the developed countries INDC’s fall well short of their fair shares; and very significant additional finance and technology support for developing countries is needed. We, therefore, would like to first see an agreement on all elements that credibly deliver on 2 OC in a fair and equitable manner. After that, negotiators need to chalk out a plan about what more needs to be done to raise the ambition to 1.5 degrees C. In the absence of real commitments, even 2 degrees C target has no real significance.

-The Hindu, PARIS, December 9, 2015

Need comprehensive, equitable agreement in Paris: Modi

Need comprehensive, equitable agreement in Paris: Modi

The latest news from the U.N. climate conference that began on Monday in Paris.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi releasing 'Parampara' — a book on India's climate friendly and sustainable practices — at the Paris conference. Also seen are Union Ministers Prakash Javadekar and Piyush Goyal. Photo: PIB

6-15 pm IST: PM closes speech: To the people of India and our friends, I call you to live with the commitment of ‘Lokah Samastah Sukhinau Bhavantu’

6-10 pm IST: Our commitment to tackle climate change arises from our timeless traditions and beliefs, says PM

6-05 pm IST: PM outlines the changes taking place in India as it adapts: By 2030, 40% of our installed capacity will be based on non-fossil fuel.

6-01 pm IST: ‘Climate change is not of our making. It is the result of global warming that came from an industrial age powered by fossil fuel.’ Yet, we face its consequences today, and that is why the outcome in Paris is so important and we are here today, says Modi

6-00 pm IST: We approach the negotiations under UNFCCC in a spirit of partnership, based on the principles of equity & common but differentiated responsibilities, says Modi

5-55 pm IST: Mr. Modi releases Parampara — a book on India’s climate friendly and sustainable practices. He is now addressing the Indian pavilion:

* Climate change is a major global challenge.

* Climate change is not of our making. It is the result of global warming that came from an industrial age powered by fossil fuel.

* Yet, we face its consequences today, and that is why the outcome in Paris is so important and we are here today.

* We want the world to act with urgency. Agreement must lead us to restore balance between humanity and nature.

* We want a comprehensive, equitable and durable agreement in Paris.

* Our commitment to tackle climate change arises from our timeless traditions and beliefs.

* PM outlines the changes taking place in India as it adapts: By 2030, 40% of our installed capacity will be based on non-fossil fuel.

5-43 pm IST: Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurates India Pavilion at COP21. Mr Modi said, “India pavilion also seeks to demonstrate the strong belief that the world needs to look beyond climate change & focus on Climate Justice.”

5-19 pm IST: Obama, Xi tout close U.S.-China climate coordination

President Barack Obama touted close U.S. cooperation with China on climate change as vital to world efforts for slowing global warming, even as he acknowledged persistent differences with China’s President Xi Jinping over cyber-security and maritime security. More…

4-50 pm IST: Modi meets Sharif

Mr. Modi meets his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif. In September, the two leaders were present at the U.N. peacekeeping summit but their interaction was limited to wave. More…

4-00 IST: ‘India will have a positive mindset’

Prime Minister Narendra Modi met French President Francois Hollande and said that India will have a “constructive and positive” mindset at the summit. In his meeting with the French president, Mr. Modi asserted that “credibility of commitments” to combat climate change by nations will be the key to a successful climate agreement during the ongoing summit.

Nearly 150 world leaders have gathered in Paris to craft a long-term deal to limit carbon emissions. Photo: @UNFCCC/Twitter

4-20 pm IST The international Red Cross is calling for delegates at the Paris conference to make a priority of helping poor and vulnerable people to deal with the impact of climate change.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies called Monday on negotiators to ensure that money is provided for communities that will face, or already face, fallout from rising temperatures.

The federation’s secretary general, Elhadj As Sy, said that “the consequences of climate change are already being felt by the world’s poorest and most vulnerable communities.” He added- “It is crucial that any new global agreement emphasizes the need to support these communities to become more resilient and reduce the climate risks they face.”

4-15 pm IST The French football federation says it wants to reduce the impact the sport can have on climate change.

In a partnership with the French agency in charge of environmental and energy—related issues, the soccer federation has issued guidelines for its members aimed at reducing pollution and carbon emissions.

“With one million matches played every year, 3 millions of kilometers (1.9 million miles) traveled every weekend, it is also football’s responsibility to contribute to limit the impact of this activity on the environment,” it said in a statement.

The federation has published an electronic guide available to its 18,000 clubs stressing for instance the need to resort to carpools at weekend matches across France or to save energy by using a reasonable amount of light on football pitches.

4-05 pm IST French President Francois Hollande is urging a strong, binding global agreement to fight climate change.

“What is at stake with this climate conference is peace,” he said at the opening of two weeks of talks.

“The fight against terrorism and the fight against climate change are two major global challenges we must face,” he said.

4-00 pm IST One of the worst spells of air pollution in recent years is hitting Beijing as negotiators meet in Paris to combat global warming.

The city reported extremely hazardous levels of the tiny, poisonous matter PM2.5 on Monday afternoon, 25 times more than what the World Health Organization considers safe.

The pollution, the worst in 2015, prompted Beijing authorities to issue a rare orange alert the second—highest in the four—level urgency system. Schools have suspended outdoor activities, and factories must reduce production.

The warnings came as the U.N. climate conference opened in Paris, aiming to create a landmark agreement to fight global warming.

3-50 pm IST World leaders gathered for a critical climate conference are holding a moment of silence in honor of people killed in recent attacks in Paris, Beirut, Baghdad, Tunisia and Mali.

U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki—moon declared the moment of silence as he launched two weeks of talks in Paris Monday aimed at a long—term deal to slow man—made global warming.

Organizers sought a high—level kickoff to the talks in hopes of providing impetus for a strong agreement. They say 151 world leaders are expected to attend.

Some leaders have visited the sites of the deadly Nov. 13 attacks in Paris. President Barack Obama laid a flower at a concert hall where dozens of people were killed.

3-15 pm IST The European Union’s environment agency says air pollution remains the single largest environmental health risk in Europe, causing more than 430,000 premature deaths in 2012.

The agency says the data, based on monitoring points across Europe, shows that people living in cities are still exposed to air pollution of “levels deemed unsafe by the World Health Organization” and resulting in serious illnesses, including heart disease, respiratory problems and cancer.

The annual air quality report was released Monday as the U.N. climate conference opened in Paris, which aims to create a landmark agreement to fight global warming.

2-40 pm IST Peruvian Environment Minister Manuel Pulgar Vidal, who played host to the last U.N. climate conference in Lima, declared this year’s meeting open Monday morning.

A total of 151 world leaders have converged on Paris to launch the two—week talks in hopes of giving an impetus for an ambitious agreement.

Vidal said a deal would show the world that countries can work together to fight global warming as well as terrorism. The talks are occurring just two weeks after deadly attacks in Paris by Islamic State extremists.

2-35 pm IST President Barack Obama says nowhere has coordination between the United States and China been more fruitful or critical than on climate change.

Obama says 180 nations followed the lead of the U.S. and China on climate change. He says “our leadership on this issue has been absolutely vital.”

Obama is meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the climate conference.

Xi says climate change is a huge challenge. He’s calling for the U.S. and China to build a new model of cooperation, using diplomatic language long preferred by Beijing.

China emits about 30 per cent of the world’s greenhouse gases and the U.S. about 16 per cent.

1-40 pm IST Paris police say 317 people were detained after an unauthorized protest seeking to call attention to climate change, which ended with police firing tear gas at protesters throwing bottles and candles.

The Paris police department had said Sunday night that 174 were detained in the protest, then said Monday morning that the figure had grown to 317. It did not give a reason for the growing number.

France is under a state of emergency after Nov. 13 attacks that killed 130 people. It banned protests ahead of landmark climate talks opening Monday, citing security concerns.

But thousands of people formed a human chain along the route of a long—planned environmental march Sunday. It was largely peaceful.

President Francois Hollande denounced the violence as “scandalous.”

12-50 pm IST U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and French President Francois Hollande are greeting heads of state and government from around the world for high-stakes talks aimed at fighting global warming.

One by one, some 150 leaders are arriving at the conference center near the Le Bourget airfield just north of Paris. Ban, Hollande, the head of the U.N. climate change agency Christina Figueres, and French Environment Minister Segolene Royal are standing in front of the conference center to greet them.

Afterwards, each leader will give a speech laying out their countries’ efforts to reduce man—made emissions and cope with climate change.

The event opening Monday lasts through Dec. 11 and is under extra-security after Nov. 13 extremist attacks in Paris.

CoP 21 leaders observe minute’s silence

The leaders event of the Conference of Parties (CoP) 21 climate summit started here with a minute’s silence in memory of those killed in the November 13 terror attacks in this French capital.

12-00 noon IST Wide Paris—area highways usually packed with commuters are cordoned off to clear the way for President Barack Obama and 150 other world leaders joining critical talks about fighting global warming.

Riot police vans and plainclothes officers are stationed around the capital and the northern suburb of Le Bourget, where the U.N.-led climate conference is being held Nov. 30-Dec. 11.

The security measures are especially tight after Islamic extremists killed 130 people two weeks ago in Paris and targeted the national stadium Stade de France, near the climate conference venue.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and French President Francois Hollande will greet each of the leaders Monday morning then each will give a speech about what their countries are doing to reduce emissions and slow climate change.

PARIS, November 30, 2015