India’s ambitious plans to host the first International Solar Alliance (ISA) Summit, on December 9, has been shelved for the time being after the visit of French President Emmanuel Macron has been put off. The first ISA Summit was to coincide with Macron’s visit on December 8-9.
ISA is co-led by India and France. It was launched in 2015 on the insistence of India during the COP21 in Paris. However, the ISA was to become a legal entity during the first Summit meeting on December 9 which now stands postponed. It is learnt that several countries are yet to ratify the agreement to make it a legal body.
ISA is a treaty based international inter-governmental alliance of 121 solar resource rich countries lying fully or partially between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn. This year Australia became the 35th country to join the ISA. However, till May, only six countries had ratified the solar alliance agreement while it needs at least 15 countries to ratify the agreement to become a legal entity. However, India is hopeful that more and more countries will join the ISA and the ratification process by member countries too will be complete soon.
The ISA Secretariat is in Gurugram in Haryana. World Bank, UNDP, European Bank, International Energy Agency, International Renewable Energy Agency, European Investment Bank and Climate Parliament are the ISA partners.
Among the objectives of ISA is to assist member countries in drafting solar policies; help them create expert groups for development of common standards, test, monitoring and verification protocols; exchange best practices and work with member countries in designing financing instruments to mitigate risk and catalyse partnerships to boost investment; share perspectives on developing electricity systems; development of standards, specifications and test protocols for solar energy systems etc.