Prime Minister's Office

Text of PM’s speech at the inauguration of first assembly of International Solar Alliance on 02 October, 2018

Posted On: 02 OCT 2018 9:40PM by PIB Delhi

Secretary General of United Nations, Excellency, Antonio Guterres, All the ministers of Indian Ocean Rim Association countries and International Solar Alliance Assembly who are present here, all my cabinet colleagues present here, friends from industry, distinguished guests, particularly the young student friends, ladies and gentlemen,

Today morning, along with Excellency, Antonio Guterres I got the opportunity to participate in an important function related to cleanliness. The celebrations on the beginning of the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi in the country and the world too have been starting from today itself. There cannot be a more appropriate occasion than today for the beginning of this deliberation of a green future.

International Solar Alliance (ISA) and I would want that this word ISA should become popular; rather it should be ISA Assembly. Whether it is global renewable energy investment and expo or a re-invest meeting or whether it is Indian Ocean Rim Association Energy Meet, the broad objective of all these three are the same – preparing an alternative of clean energy for a green future.

Friends,

In the last 150-200 years, the human race has largely been dependant on the fossil fuels for meeting its energy requirements. And we all bear testimony to the fact that how nature has rejected it and even today it is rejecting it. The nature is constantly giving usthis message that the energy available above the ground, be it solar power, wind power or hydro power, that is the solution for a better and safe future.

I am happy that today all of us have gathered to deliberate upon this message conveyed to us by the nature.

Friends,

I still remember that I had put forth India’s resolve for moving from megawatt to gigawatt in the field of renewable energy before our countrymen in the first meeting of re-invest three years ago. I had clarified this thing at that time that we will be able to take advantage of solar and green energy only when it becomes affordable and easily available. And I had also put forward a proposal to create a common platform of the countries rich in solar resources. I am happy that we have received unprecedented successin taking forward these schemes in an extremely short span of time.

Friends,

Today, International Solar Alliance has emerged as a big ray of hope for the world. Within three years, this organization has become a treaty based inter governmental organization. 1.25 billion Indians are happy over this thing that the headquarter of ISA is located in India too. This further increases our affinity towards ISA.

I believe that whenever the issue of top human welfare organizations established during the 21st century will be discussed then the ISA’s name will figure at the top of it. We have created a massive platform in form of the ISA for ensuring climate justice. All of us have collectively provided a huge gift linked to humanity to the future generations.

Friends,

I have always believed that International Solar Alliance (ISA) is going to play the same role which is being played by OPEC in meeting the energy needs of the world today. Sun rays are going to play the same role in future that is being played by oil wells today. I especially express gratitude to the United Nations for providing the active support in taking the initiative of the ISA where it is today. Presence of the then United Nations’ general secretary, Excellency Ban Ki-moon in the program to launch the ISA in Paris and the presence of Excellency, Antonio Guterres in today’s program shows that how much importance United Nations attaches to this forum. On this occasion, I also express my heartfelt gratitude for the President of France and French Government for their support and cooperation.

Friends,

Representatives of 40 countries are present in this first assembly of ISA. However, now we need to move forward in that direction where these options of solar energy do not remain confined to the one hundred or one hundred twenty five nations located around Capricorn but the entire world should benefit from it.

As per the spirit of universal cooperation on solar energy, India is going to put forwardthe proposal for the membership of all the members of United Nations in the ISA assembly.

Friends,

India, being an important member of this organisation, gives a lot of importance toIndian Ocean Rim Association. We have similar challenges in the field of energy. That is why, given our energy security requirements, all of us need to lay a collective emphasis on the renewable energy.

I have already placed the spirit of SAGAR - security and growth for all in the region before everybody earlier. I am confident that this meeting will open new doors of cooperation.

Friends,

The impact of increasing use of renewable energy in India is now becoming visible. We have started to work on action plan for deployment of renewable energy to meet the targets set under the Paris Climate Agreement. We have decided to produce forty percent of our electricity through non-fossil fuel based resources by the year 2030.As per this target, we have doubled our renewable energy capacity to72 gigawatt in the last four years. In this thing, our solar energy capacity has grown by nine times. Today, non-hydro renewable energy accounts for 20% of the total electricity produced by us. Not only this, we are going to add nearly 50 gigawatt capacity to it very soon. It’s a clear indication that we have been successfully moving on the path to achieve the target of 175 gigawatt by 2022 that we have set for ourselves and we willcertainly be able to achieve it.

Friends,

Today, India is fastening its speed of development with the new confidence of‘poverty to power’. We have selected the same source to provide strength to our new confidence that has been a source of our strength and energy for thousands of years. And this source is the Sun which has been worshipped by us, the people of India as the Sun God.

Friends,

The Sun is the God of light and energy for us. We believe that the Sun provides momentum to the entire creation. It has been a natural tradition of our social life to start the day by offering water to the first ray of the Sun and by chanting the mantra: Om SuryayNamah (I bow down to the Sun God).

From Ved to Yog, the Sun has been the source of our thinking, our worship, and of our internal energy. We are now determined to convert this internal energy into a solution for our external energy requirements through the power of modern science.

Friends,

India has been working in the field of solar power at a rapid pace. In the last four years, the solar power has become very affordable which has made possible our target to connect several poor people with the electricity at a rapid pace.

‘Panel to Power’ and ‘Make in India’ are very important milestone in our target of providing electricity to every household. I am happy that India has emerged as the most preferred destination in the field of renewable energy in the last four years. An investment of nearly 42 billion has been made during this period.

Friends,

These changes taking place in the field of solar power do not only provide an opportunity for foreign investment but they also provide an unprecedented opportunity for our entrepreneurs. We have been trying to create a strong eco-system for solar panel manufacturing in the country.

This is the most appropriate time for investing into the renewable energy sector. I see the possibility of business worth nearly $70 to 80 billion in this sector in the next four years.

Friends,

Along with power generation, power storage is also extremely important, and the work for creating necessary infrastructure for this thing has been done under the national energy storage mission. Under this mission, the government has been laying emphasis on providing necessary policy support for demand creation, indigenous manufacturing, innovationand for increasing theenergy storage capacity.

The arrangements have been made to install solar panels in farms in villages and for connecting them with the grid through the KUSAM – KisanUrjaSurakshaEvamUtthanMahaAbhiyan. Nearly 28 lakh solar pumps will be installed across the country in the next four years. A target of producing nearly 10 gigawatt of electricity through them has been set.

Friends,

In addition to solar and wind power, we have been working on B-3 which means biomass, bio-fuel and bio-energy at a fast pace. Serious efforts have been made to develop clean fuel based transport system in India. We have been turning this challenge into an opportunity by producing bio-fuel from bio-gas. We have put forward a massive scheme – GobarDhan (Make money through cow dung) for this purpose. Several novel experiments have been conducted across cities and villages for converting the waste into energy.

Friends,

For protection of environment, the work is already being carried out in the field of renewable energy, but conservation of electricity is also among one of our priorities.

Today, a massive movement to illuminate the homes, streets and roads through LED bulbs has been going on in every nook and corner of India under the Ujala scheme. Nearly 31 crore LED bulbs have been distributed under the scheme. These 31 crore LED bulbs, it’s a massive number and nearly 40,000 million kilowatt hour electricity is being saved every year due to this thing. Can anybody imagine its magnitude? Not only this, it has saved nearly Rs. 16,000 crore of the people of the country in a year on account of electricity bill and we have prevented generation of carbon dioxide in a big way.

And I would like to say it once again that it is just the beginning. Future is full of several opportunities. We must look at the possibility of every opportunity related to the climate justice for the future generations and we must succeed.

I believe that all of you will thoroughly discuss these opportunities in the next three days and will contribute in further illumination and beautification of the renewable future.

I assure you people that your every suggestion, every innovative idea will be extremely important for us. And that is why we openly bring to the fore all these things be it human resource development or be it technology up gradation or be it the small experiments conducted by ordinary people in the new countries of the world and I am confident that we can complete this mission. And the issue of globalization was discussed a lot in the economic world and technology brought the world extremely close to each other. We too have started with one dream: One World, One Sun, One Grid.

If we materialize this mission then you can imagine that if this grid starts at the place of sunrise and goes till the time sun sets then we can harness electricity from the Sun round the clock. Today, we only think in terms of availability of the sun light in hours in our own country, however, if we move ahead with the dream of One World, One Sun, One Grid, then it will not be impossible to produce electricity somewhere at some point of time because the Sun must be shining on someplace on the earth all the time, if the Sun never sets then why should the generation of electricity stop.

There is a need to think in a novel way. And I believe thatwe will certainly move ahead to play our important role in building a new world with a new confidence, with new ideas, with a new energy and new resolve on the occasion of this important programme of ISA.

Once again I express my sincere gratitude to you peoplefor visiting India, for participating in this important programto contribute in the bright future of the world.

Thank you very much.

*****

AKT/SH/RSB/AK



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