• The International Solar Alliance was inaugurated by the Indian Prime Minister and French President in National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE) in Gwalpahari, Gurgaon along with the interim Secretariat of the ISA. It has been set up with UN as strategic partner.
• It is the India’s first international and inter-governmental organization of 121 Countries to have headquarters in India with United Nations as Strategic Partner.
• It creates a collaborative platform for increased deployment of solar energy technologies to enhance energy security and sustainable development.
• It improves access to energy and opportunities for better livelihoods in rural and remote areas and to increase the standard of living.
• It will work with partner countries to formulate projects and programmes to accelerate development and deployment of existing clean solar energy technologies, the potential for which largely remaining untapped.
• It develops innovative financial mechanisms to reduce cost of capital and builds a common knowledge e-Portal.
• It also facilitates capacity building for promotion and absorption of solar technologies and Research and Development among member countries.
• It will encourage multilateral bodies like IRENA, REEEP, IEA, REN21, UN bodies, bilateral organizations, corporates, industry, and other stakeholders to contribute towards the goal of increasing utilization of solar energy in the member countries.
• To achieve the objectives, ISA will have five key focus areas:-
a) It will encourage member countries to promote investment in solar technologies/applications to promote income and welfare of the poor and make global environment more climate friendly;
b) Formulate projects and programmes to promote solar applications together and with partnership of member countries and with cooperation from international organizations to ensure solar light for energy deprived households by the year 2022;
c) Develop innovative Financial Mechanisms through long tenure financial resources from bilateral, multilateral agencies and other sources to reduce cost of capital;
d) Build a knowledge platform, including a 24×7 e-portal for sharing of policy development experiences and best practices in member countries; and
e) To promote partnerships among R&D centres of member countries for application oriented research & development and delivering technologies to people as well as capacity building through training & educational programmes and exchange of officials/ entrepreneurs/sector experts/ students/interns/ apprentices, user groups etc.
• These focus areas will cater to not just grid connected solar power (Solar parks, Solar thermal projects, Rooftop solar projects, Canal top projects, Solar on water bodies, Farmers and unemployed youths as generators) but also off-grid and decentralised applications (Village electrification and mini-grids, Solar lanterns, Mobile chargers, Solar powered telecom towers, Milk chilling centres, Potters wheels, Solar spinner for weavers, street lights, Solar pumps, Solar heating/cooling, etc.). These activities will contribute significantly in employment generation in a decentralized manner at the local levels, and also in spurring economic activities.
• Hence with this initiative solar energy will be utilized for economic development.