Context: Recently, Nicaragua has become the latest country to join the International Solar Alliance (ISA) Framework Agreement.
About International Solar Alliance (ISA)
- It is an alliance of 120+ countries, led by India to promote sustainable energy.
- Most of the member countries lie either completely or partly between the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn.
- ISA was jointly launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and former French President Francois Hollande at the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris in November 2015.
- ISA became a treaty-based intergovernmental body in December 2017.
Importance of International Solar Alliance (ISA)
Environmental Importance of ISA
- Its objective is to ensure “clean and affordable energy” to the masses which, in turn, can ensure “sustainable security”.
- It is a major global initiative for the implementation of the Paris Climate Agreement, envisioning rapid deployment of solar energy units.
- Its aim is to address large-scale environmental problems which are associated with conventional sources of energy.
- Solar energy is an important constituent of Renewable Energy (RE) which is getting attention from both, policy makers as well as scientists as an alternative source due its wider “availability” along with “affordability”.
- Its objective is to meet the twin goals of “adaptation” as well as “integration” of energy resources along with climate change.
Geopolitical Significance of ISA
- The emergence of solar energy as an important component of the Renewable Energy (RE) dialogue process is taking place when the prices of oil and gas are fluctuating in the international market.
- The process of establishing the ISA is taking place when there is a growing need for RE as an alternative source of energy both at the global and regional level.
- Its mission is to necessary tap sun rays and use them for electricity generation, which can significantly meet the requirement of local population which, in turn, would improve the standard of living of the population.
- The moot point of ISA is that it gives representation to countries like Fiji and South Sudan, along with advanced countries like Australia and France, thus taking a step to ensure global equity.
- Most of the member states of the ISA are poorer countries and they can join together and bargain with the oil-rich countries to break their monopoly over oil and gas.
Future of International Solar Alliance (ISA) post COVID-19
- It has the potential to shape the global development of a solar powered vaccine logistics network to replace the kerosene-based absorption refrigerators.
- With a mandate to promote solar energy, ISA could become the new age platform for a renewed multilateral effort.