India’s new Prime Minister Narendra Modi brings new hope for low carbon economy

Clare Saxon Ghauri
16 May 2014

NEW DELHI: Today Narendra Modi wins the election to be the new Prime Minister of India, bringing new optimism that India can emerge as a leader of the global low carbon economy.

With a strong history of support for clean energy as well as ambitious climate policy and renewables investment high up on his agenda, Modi’s leadership has the potential to accelerate a new era of low carbon growth and create a better future for all in the country.

Articulating his strategy for the energy sector, Modi has publicly supported solar and low carbon at large to bring about an “energy revolution” in the country. During one of his polling campaigns Modi stressed the importance of supporting a low carbon economy stating, “Renewable energy is the way forward for India”.

Krishnan Pallasanna, India Director, The Climate Group says: “We welcome Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister under the new government in India. We are optimistic that the government will face the challenges of a low carbon growth paradigm head on, putting renewable energy business at the top of their economic agenda, and demonstrating political commitment toward a clear and progressive policy framework for low carbon business to flourish.”

In the past, together the Indian government and the private sector have undertaken a number of major efforts to promote a low carbon economy in India, by encouraging energy-efficient clean production as well as use of clean energy.

However, for continuous stimulation and monitoring of the changes needed to facilitate the transition to an environmentally sustainable low carbon economy, it is necessary to have an effective and strongly determined institutional set-up.

Krishnan further adds: “With the new government expected to boost economic growth through next level reforms, there is a now or never opportunity that begs to be exploited; the opportunity to showcase and champion a low carbon growth model. Demand for clean energy in India is huge, is growing and has the potential to change the lives of millions of energy-deprived Indians. Although there have been steady strides made in the past, I am sure the new government will unleash the extraordinary potential India holds to become a renewable energy super power.”

Considering one half of India’s rural population still lacks access to commercial electricity, in line with Modi’s vision, renewable energy could unlock huge opportunities for millions of people who live in rural India, optimizing their productivity, improving their quality of life and eradicating them of poverty.

According to the energy security plan cut out by Modi, renewable energy scale-up has the potential “to effectively transform lives of the common man” in the country.

Indeed The Climate Group’s recent work in Gujarat, Maharashtra and West Bengal has demonstrated that clean and renewable energy is viable, equitable and accessible, particularly for rural communities, through our Bijli program.

We look forward to Prime Minister Modi bringing new optimism that India can become a leader of the global low carbon economy, leverage conducive framework and generate long-term finance for the renewable energy sector.

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