Government to Launch New Scheme for Livelihood Applications of Distributed Renewable Energy: Power Minister RK Singh
The minister released two new reports by CEEW and Villgro, which show that clean technologies have the potential to impact 37 million livelihoods in India's agriculture and textile sectors and translate into a market opportunity worth almost INR 4 lakh crore.
May 18, 2023. By News Bureau
“Our government is coming out with a new scheme for distributed applications of renewable energy (RE). There is already a lot of work happening on the ground and our scheme could benefit lakhs of families across the country. We will, however, need large scale-manufacturing and standardising of distributed applications of RE to lower prices and expand the sector. We have seen the potential of grid-scale solar power; India will scale up distributed applications of renewable energy for livelihoods. Just like we have a large programme on rooftop solar and solar irrigation, we will create a large programme for DRE livelihoods,” the minister said.
“The government plans to make DRE livelihood equipment affordable. One aspect of this will be tying up with banks. If a family wants to own a solar dryer, they should be able to get financing from the banks – we will work towards it. Manufacturers and users of DRE for livelihoods are pioneers and now the government will scale it up to the next level,” he added.
Union minister R.K. Singh released two new reports by CEEW and Villgro, which show that clean technologies have the potential to impact 37 million livelihoods in India's agriculture and textile sectors and translate into a market opportunity worth almost INR 4 lakh crore (about USD 50 billion). Further, 70 per cent of women and farmers using clean technology reported an income increase, typically by 35 per cent.
The minister also launched ‘Suraj ka Gola’, a solar anthem produced by CEEW and Villgro. Created in collaboration with the band Maati Baani and Ashish Kulkarni of Indian Idol fame, the song celebrates how solar energy is transforming lives and livelihoods in rural India.
In India, solar-powered pumps—higher capacity and micro-pumps—have the maximum deployment potential, followed by solar-powered vertical fodder growing units and solar dryers. Collectively, these four technologies alone can impact around 27 million livelihoods.
Abhishek Jain, Fellow and Director – Powering Livelihoods, CEEW, said, “India is among the global leaders in clean energy transition. With a programme like Powering Livelihoods, we are taking this clean energy transition to the masses and contributing to their incomes and livelihoods. By deploying more than 11,000 such technologies across India since the pandemic, we have shown the impact of clean-energy-powered livelihood technologies on enhancing and diversifying people’s incomes.”
The reports found that clean-tech-powered technologies have the greatest impact opportunity in Uttar Pradesh, followed by West Bengal, Bihar, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, and Karnataka. But the relative market for each livelihood technology varies across states.
Further, the CEEW-Villgro analysis highlighted that women form the majority of these clean tech users currently. Out of the 767 users surveyed across 19 states, 74 per cent of respondents were women.
Ananth Aravamundan, Sector Lead – Climate Action, Villgro, said, “Through Powering Livelihoods, we have supported social entrepreneurs who are trying to create lakhs of livelihoods in rural India by harnessing renewable energy, using scalable and replicable business models. Over a 15-year investment horizon, the clean tech product variants become more attractive than their grid alternatives. We hope that the evidence generated by this programme will motivate policymakers, financiers and manufacturers to extend support to mainstream such livelihood products.”
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