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Climate leadership key focus of Sixth India Members Meeting

20 April 2012
Climate leadership key focus of Sixth India Members Meeting

NEW DELHI: On April 19, we held our Sixth India Members Meeting in New Delhi. The meeting focused on climate change leadership opportunities in India, as business leaders shared the low carbon solutions we need to accelerate a Clean Revolution now.

Attended by senior level representation from Alstom, Mahindra Reva, Carbon Disclosure Project, RBS Foundation,Dell, CBRE, GE, IFC, Tata BP Solar, Philips and British High Commission, the meeting also highlighted the great opportunity for more parties to join the Clean Revolution Campaign.

The meeting was opened by Mark Kenber, CEO, The Climate Group, who briefed the representatives on the launch of the Clean Revolution Campaign that will take place at the Rio+20 Earth Summit in June 2012, and stressed the urgent need for strong climate leadership. Touching on the growing global climate concerns he said: “Even a country like Britain is facing shortages of water as there have not been any winter rains for last two to three years, and if the same continues, availability of water resources in Britain will be severely hampered.”

Next, Aditi Dass, Director of Programs India, The Climate Group, informed members about the initiatives of the The Climate Group's India office, and shared insights from the LED street light pilots that are being undertaken to redefine public lighting in Indian cities.

The meeting featured representatives from all the major low carbno technology industries including LEDs, EVs and solar, all of whom expressed their desire to see a cleaner and more resource-productive, low carbon world.

Sunand Sharma, Country President, Indian and South Asia, Alstom, presented the various strategies that clean energy leader Alstom has employed, talking in detail about the company's energy efficient initiatives. He shared a core driver for Alstom taking steps towards climate care while maintaining its business pace, when he said: “We are gripped with tomorrow for a better future for us, and for everyone else in this planet.”

Pavan Sachdeva, General Manager, Sales and Marketing, Mahindra Reva, focused specifically on the challenges and opportunities for electric vehicles (EVs) in India. He said: “There has been a paradigm shift in environmental awareness among people over the years and it’s very clear that opportunities with EV are enormous. However there are major obstacles such as challenges in supply chain and distribution systems which need to addressed.” He also mentioned the electric mobility roadmap which is under consideration by the Government of India.

Expressing further corporate commitment towards a low carbon world, Himamshu Prasad, President and CEO, GE Lighting - India added: “We are making high investments in energy efficiency and it is a part of the commitment to environmental protection.”

Amit Kumar, Additional General Manager, Tata BP Solar India, spoke about the vast opportunities in India's solar sector. He commented: “From the year 2007 onwards, solar space has seen a major change in India and there is a tremendous opportunity in India for rural lighting and renewable energy.”

The subsequent corporate engagement discussion saw participants debate key issues including energy efficiency in the telecom sector, financing barriers for low carbon solutions, and success and failures of carbon credits. During the course of discussions on mapping out a plan for cleaner and more sustainable world, Rajesh Kumar Miglani, Regional Climate Change Specialist, South Asia, International Finance Corporation, captured the meeting's overriding message and most critical call for action when he said: “We have enough low carbon solutions that have been piloted - it’s time that scalable models come up and only then things can change fast.”

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