Grenada and India sign International Solar Alliance agreement

Indian Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, HE. Anupriyu Singh Patel and Foreign Affair Minister Peter David

by Curlan Campbell, NOW Grenada

  • Grenada recent signatory to International Solar Alliance
  • Foreign Affair Minister Peter David welcomes initiative

Ranked as the 3rd largest polluter in the world, India is among countries taking the lead to mitigate against climate change by introducing is the International Solar Alliance (ISA) designed to massively reduce the cost of solar energy.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron co-chaired the ISA founding conference in the presence of heads of state of 23 countries and ministerial representatives from 10 other nations, indicating an acceptance of India’s leadership role in the global fight against climate change. The establishment of the ISA came out of the 2015 United National climate change conference in Paris (COP 21).

The Indian government’s plans to create 175 gigawatts of renewable energy capacity by 2022, making it the world’s single-largest renewable energy programme.  The ISA will be headquartered in Gurgaon in Delhi’s suburbs, the first time that an international treaty body will have its secretariat in India.

So far more than 56 countries that have signed on to the International Solar Alliance with its recent signatory being Grenada. Indian Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare, HE Anupriyu Singh Patel and Foreign Affair Minister Peter David signed the International Solar Alliance agreement on Monday.

HE Patel said this spark a new thrust towards sustainable energy for member countries. “The Prime Minister of India took the initiative and invited all the nations to come together and fight against this menace of climate change, and that is why more than 56 countries have already signed this alliance, and we are very happy that Trinidad and Tobago have already signed, and this will go a long way in fulfilling the dream of creating a world that is more environmentally stable.”

Membership is available to countries like Grenada lying fully or partially between the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn. Member states will be asked to make voluntary contributions to the ISA while the bulk of the leadership and financial commitment will come from India and France. The government of India will contribute US$27 million over the 5-year period 2017-2021 to establish the ISA.

This massive reduction will be achieved through the scaling of solar power via coordination among resource-rich and technological advance countries to fulfil the call made in the Paris Declaration on the international solar alliance which calls for the mobilisation of more than US$100 billion by 2030 for the deployment of solar energy.

Foreign Affair Minister Peter David welcomed the initiative. “The fact that we have signed the solar alliance is something that we welcome, and we will do everything to cooperate to fulfil this agreement…this exposes Grenada to possible financing in small and medium projects where solar energy can be used for community development.”

The ISA will manage a fund whose revenues will cover operating costs, while financial resources for specific programmes will be mobilised from among the member states participating in a given programme.

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