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India: Interview with India's renewable energy minister: Renewable energy and clean technologies as a vehicle of sustainable development

Published at: Jan 15, 2012
source: Dubai Chronicle
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Ahead of the World Future Energy Summit (WFES) in Adu Dhabi 2012 today, India's Union Minister for New and Renewable Energy Dr Farooq Abdullah emphasizes in an interview the role of renewables in the economic development of India.

India is the only country in the with a ministry devoted to the development and growth of renewable energy.

In an exclusive interview with the minister Dr Farooq Abdullah stresses the importance of renewable energy not only for India, but also for the world. The share of clean and sustainable technology must be increased while the damage to the environment should decrease to achieve sustainable development.

India passed through the phase of research and is has already installed a renewable based capacity base, which generates around 11 percent of India's total power capacity. In the last five years India added over eleven GW capacity and plans to add another 30 GW capacity in the next five years. In this context Dr Farooq Abdullah underlines the renewable friendly and supportive policy-framework in India, which continously promotes the development of renewable energy. For example the most recent initiative JNNSM (Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission) plans to add 20.000 MW capacity of solar power by 2022. Phase I of the project is already under implementation.

Additionally the minister highlights the advantages of clean energy in India. In his view renewable and sustainable energy is the optimal and most appropriate solution for providing power to the most rural areas. This development would become the driving force in inclusive development.

Nevertheless, Dr Farooq Abdullah is being aware of some challanges which India will face. On the one hand renewable power is more expensive than other technology. Therefore reducing per-unit costs in the renewable sector mirrors one of the biggest challenges. On the other hand there are challenges concerning technology and financing. The minister ascribes the government the role to racilitate this clean development and to promote basic and applied research.

The World Energy Furture Summit in Abu Dhabi brings together governments, businesses and thinkers who then jointly contribute to a cleaner development. The ministers stresses that for India and its investors and manufacturers the Summit is a great opportunity to interact with the world leaders in the private and public sectors, because renewable energy is the future of mankind.

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