India’s solar plans receive billion dollar boost

World Bank loan comes off back of major funding pledges from US and Germany as major economies try and wean Delhi off coal

Finance is needed to support green growth and climate resilience in developing countries (Pic: Department for International Development/Flickr)

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The sun is shining a little brighter on Delhi’s ambitious plans to triple its use of renewable energy by 2030 after $1 billion of funding was confirmed by the World Bank.

The loan will leverage investment in the country’s domestic energy market and mobilise $1 trillion in finance for the Indian-led International Solar Alliance (ISA) said officials.

“India’s plans to virtually triple the share of renewable energy by 2030 will both transform the country’s energy supply and have far-reaching global implications in the fight against climate change,” said Jim Kim, World Bank Group President.

“Prime Minister Modi’s personal commitment toward renewable energy, particularly solar, is the driving force behind these investments.”

Launched on the sidelines of the 2015 UN climate summit in Paris, the ISA counts 120 countries as members and targets a concerted push to lowering the costs of solar power.

India has plans to deploy more than 100 gigawatts of solar by 2022, a goal energy minister Piyush Goyal has previously said it would meet easily due to falling technology costs.

Seen as key to tackling climate change, Indian prime minister Narendra Modi has been heavily courted by major economies keen to see him enforce tougher greenhouse gas emission goals.

Last year Germany offered €1 billion over five years to help India meet a goal of deploying 100 gigawatts of solar by 2022, while in June Modi and US president Barack Obama agreed to a $440 million clean energy package.

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