The membership of International Solar Alliance (ISA) could be extended to countries beyond the inter-tropical zone, as a means to expand the scope of harnessing solar energy across the globe.
“Serious consideration is on for expanding the membership of ISA beyond the tropics,” a senior official who did not wish to be quoted told ET.
ISA, which was jointly launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and France’s then President Francois Hollande in November 2015 on the sidelines of COP21, became a legal entity in December last year. It is an international treaty-based alliance of 121 solar-rich countries situated fully or partially between the tropics.
Of the 121 member nations of ISA, 60 have signed the treaty and about 30 nations have ratified it.
“Since the sun shines beyond the tropics and ISA has to serve as a global initiative, we may consider making the alliance open for all,” the official quoted above added.
An announcement regarding the expansion of ISA membership beyond the tropics could be made by the Prime Minister at the founding conference of ISA here on Sunday.
So far, Korea, Germany, Nepal, Tunisia and Italy have evinced strong interest to become “full-fledged” members of ISA. These countries have pointed out that countries outside the tropics have equally efficient solar resources and have displayed past leadership in the solar space.
The event, which will see France’s President Emmanuel Macron along with heads of states from neighbouring countries, Asia, Pacific and South America in attendance, aims at strengthening cooperation for solar-led initiatives across the member nations.
At the founding ceremony, two more initiatives of ISA, including solar storage and solar e-mobility, will be launched, as mentioned on the ISA website.
An India-led initiative, co-signed by France, ISA is a platform for co-operation among solar-rich nations.
“With 121 countries having signed the treaty, it is now time that we make it global, and harness solar power using improved technology in countries where harnessing solar power may not be so easy,” the official said.