November 21, 2015 3:36:05 am
A Global Solar Alliance, an idea mooted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to bring together countries that receive lot of sunlight, will be formally launched on the opening day of the upcoming climate change conference in Paris, which will be attended by more than 100 heads of states and governments.
French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, who will preside over the conference, said Modi and France President Francois Hollande will together launch the initiative on November 30, the first day of the two-week annual conference that is expected to deliver a global agreement on climate change. He added that India plays a “pivotal role” in climate change negotiations.
The heads of states and governments are converging in Paris to give their political backing to the negotiating process and to express their commitment to a long-term balanced agreement that will seek to bring down greenhouse gas emissions.
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“In all, 137 heads of states will come and speak. We thought it was necessary to give a political impulse to the negotiations. The agreement will be discussed by the negotiators and ministers, but nobody can give the political impulse more properly than the heads of states,” Fabius said during his visit to New Delhi.
Fabius and his Special Representative, Laurence Tubiana, are visiting a few key countries in their last-minute attempt to iron out differences on major issues ahead of the conference. India was their first stop. They are to travel to Ethiopia, South Africa, Brazil, Canada and the US.
“India plays pivotal role in climate negotiations. Our common work towards a successful outcome in Paris has been very stimulating,” Fabius said.
“We support India’s plan to set up an international alliance that will bring an important contribution to ensuring access to low-carbon energy. Modi and Hollande will launch this initiative together. Such a project can set up an ambitious international partnership and India is at its forefront. We must gather the support of as many nations as possible,” he said.
The idea of forging such an alliance was first floated last year following India’s announcement that it will attempt to generate 100 GW of electricity from solar energy by 2022 instead of the 20 GW it was targeting earlier. The effort was to get all the countries in the tropics to switch to solar power as much as possible.
The ‘alliance’ also hopes to facilitate joint research and development into solar technologies.
Modi and Hollande will also release a book containing a summary of statements of famous thinkers on the importance of living in harmony with nature. The two leaders have together written a preface to the book.
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