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International Solar Alliance, Bloomberg Philanthropies partners to mobilize $1 trillion in solar financing

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Bloomberg Philanthropies and the International Solar Alliance (ISA) has announced a partnership to mobilize $1 trillion in global investments for solar energy across ISA's member countries. The two organizations will kick off the collaboration by working with World Resources Institute (WRI) to develop a Solar Investment Action Agenda and a Solar Investment Roadmap, which will be launched at COP26 and in 2022, respectively.

To support the new partnership, BloombergNEF (BNEF) released the Scaling Up Solar in ISA Member Countries report, which will serve as the analytical backing for both the Action Agenda and Solar Investment Roadmap.

"Global energy demand is rapidly rising, especially in developing countries, and the price of solar power is rapidly falling – but there is not enough of it being deployed," said Michael R. Bloomberg, UN Secretary General's Special Envoy for Climate Ambition and Solutions and Founder of Bloomberg LP and Bloomberg Philanthropies.

"Fixing that requires more collaboration across the public and private sectors, and more data to identify challenges and opportunities – and both will be central to this effort. By speeding up investment in solar power, this new partnership will help to curb the carbon emissions that are heating the planet – while also spurring economic growth, creating jobs, and reducing costs for the public."

RK Singh, Minister of Power & Minister of New and Renewable Energy said, "When Government of India launched the International Solar Alliance, we recognized the incredible role that solar can play in decarbonizing economies and lifting communities out of energy poverty. Substantially more investment is needed to accelerate these benefits—and today's partnership will pave the way for us to get there. With strong data and clear policy recommendations, we can catalyze the investment we need."

Dr. Ajay Mathur, Director General, International Solar Alliance said, "ISA has a vital role to help establish the infrastructure and ecosystem for a zero-carbon emission future. With strong foundations already in place, our immediate focus is to identify and mobilize the opportunities and capital to accelerate our solarization goals in the interim and long term. This partnership would help three different but interlinked objectives: promoting a clean energy transition; enabling energy access and energy security, and delivering a new economic driver for ISA member countries."

Scaling Up Solar in ISA Member Countries finds that electricity demand is expected to triple in 75 less-developed ISA countries over the next three decades while the cost of utility-scale solar is expected to drop by almost 20 percent in the next five years. These findings show that solar power is the most economically viable solution for adding new power generation capacity for more than half the world's population. But to capitalize on the benefits of solar energy, help lift people out of energy poverty, and drive the transition to a lower-carbon economy, trillions of dollars in private investment need to be mobilized and the right policy frameworks need to be put in place.

Drawing on the BNEF analysis, Bloomberg Philanthropies, ISA and WRI will work together to ensure ISA member countries and partners agree on the necessary pathways for scaling up investment and commit to catalyzing $1 trillion toward solar energy by 2030. This partnership aims to kickstart the required catalytic investment across ISA member countries through the Solar Investment Action Agenda. The Action Agenda proposes high-impact opportunities for rapidly scaling the delivery of financial mechanisms to meet solar technology needs in different countries.

"Solar energy will play an enormous role in the transition to a more sustainable future, but it has to be equitable," said Ani Dasgupta, President, and CEO, WRI.

"Only 2 percent of solar investment is going into Africa, even though the continent has vast solar potential and many people without electricity access. We need to make solar investment real to the millions of people who have been left behind. This partnership will identify opportunities for the public and private sector to collaborate and scale solar investment to make this transition possible." 

Author : Debi Dash
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