The International Solar Alliance (ISA) has signed an MoU with the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and the World Bank to design a plan for implementing ‘One Solar One World and One Grid’ (OSOWOG). The ISA also signed an MoU with India’s largest power generator, NTPC Limited, for implementing solar energy projects in 47 member countries of ISA.
Officially announced during the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris in 2015, the ISA is a partnership of solar resource-rich countries. Currently, 121 countries have agreed to be members of ISA. Most of these are countries with a large participation from Africa, Southeast Asia, and Europe. Pakistan and China are not a members of the ISA. The alliance is headquartered in Gurugram.
At ISA's first World Solar Technology Summit (WSTS), Union power minister R K Singh delivered a message from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who lauded ISA's efforts.
“ISA is the first inter-governmental organisation headquartered in India. The country is providing capacity building support to ISA member countries. We have also set up a project management agency to help set up bankable solar projects in ISA member countries. ISA is a part of the OSOWOG project and this project can bring transformational benefit for the entire world,” Singh said, while reading out PM’s statement.
According to the draft plan prepared by the MNRE, the ambitious OSOWOG will connect 140 countries through a common grid which will be used to transfer solar power. ISA will execute the bidding for the OSOWOG plan.
“The vision behind the OSOWOG mantra is “The Sun Never Sets” and is a constant at some geographical locations, globally, at any given point of time. With India at the fulcrum, the solar spectrum can easily be divided into two broad zones - the Far East, which would include countries like Myanmar, Vietnam, Thailand, Lao, Cambodia etc. and the far West which would cover the Middle East and the Africa region,” MNRE said in the terms of reference in the RfP published to hire consultants for OSOWOG.
With regards to the MoU signed with the ISA, NTPC Chairman Gurdeep Singh said, “The MoU will help NTPC share its technical and project management expertise with ISA member countries. We are thankful to the governments of Togo and Mali for giving us the opportunity to build 285 Mw and 500 Mw solar projects, respectively. We are eager to work closely with the 47 countries for which we have signed MoU with ISA.”