The International Solar Alliance (ISA) plans to launch the World Solar Bank (WSB) at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow in November, a top ISA official said, a development that will support India’s attempt to secure leadership in the climate arena. The ISA is the first treaty-based international government organization headquartered in India.
The development assumes significance, given that green finance will be among priority themes at the climate meet called COP-26, which comes in the backdrop of US re-joining the Paris climate accord. The ISA was co-founded by India at the 2015 climate change conference in Paris.
“We are trying to launch a Green Grid Initiative (GGI), a Sun Charter, and the World Solar Bank at COP-26 at Glasgow so that COP-26 becomes as important and as far-reaching as COP-21 in the past,” ISA director general Upendra Tripathy said.
COP-26 president Alok Sharma arrived in Delhi on 15 February, and met Prime Minister Narendra Modi, environment, forest and climate change minister Prakash Javadekar, external affairs minister S. Jaishankar, power and new and renewable energy minister Raj Kumar Singh, and G20 and G7 sherpa Suresh Prabhu.
These plans come in the backdrop of Ajay Mathur, a leading climate expert and advisor to the government, being elected as the next ISA director-general. Leading global efforts to roll out “solarization” as part of the fight against climate change will be Mathur’s key task as he takes over the ISA mantle.
Apart from working towards setting up the WSB, which is also expected to be headquartered in India, ISA is the nodal agency for implementing India’s global electricity grid plan, One Sun One World One Grid (OSOWOG), that seeks to transfer solar power generated in one region to feed the electricity demands of others.
“GGI is a joint effort of ISA and Climate Parliament to showcase the Green Energy Corridor (GEC) of India as an example to the world and encourage all member countries to emulate India’s GEC and integrate them to OSOWOG,” Tripathy added.
A consortium led by French state-run power utility firm EDF and comprising France’s AETS, and India’s The Energy and Resources Institute (Teri) has been tasked with creating the road map for the global grid OSOWOG.