A new report by NITI Aayog, Government of India’s premier think tank, Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), and RMI India discusses how COVID-19 is influencing the clean energy transition in India, as well as identifying principles and strategic opportunities to drive economic recovery and maintain momentum towards a clean energy economy.
Towards a Clean Energy Economy: Post-COVID-19 Opportunities for India’s Energy and Mobility Sectors advocates for stimulus and recovery efforts including electric vehicle, energy storage, and renewable energy programs.
Rajiv Kumar, Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog said he is confident that India’s economy will recover following the containment of the Covid-19 pandemic. “India’s strong democratic institutions promote policy stability. Ongoing economic reforms, if executed well, should keep the country’s growth rate ahead of peers,” he said.
“Clean energy will be a major driver of India’s economic recovery and international competitiveness,” said Amitabh Kant, CEO, NITI Aayog. “We have recommended specific actions by which India can revive two of our economic powerhouses—the transport and power sectors—and emerge stronger.”
The report lays out four principles as a framework to support India’s clean energy future: 1) invest in least-cost-energy solutions, 2) support resilient and secure energy systems, 3) prioritize efficiency and competitiveness, and 4) promote social and environmental equity.
“COVID-19 has disrupted the world and affected everyone’s lives,” said Clay Stranger, senior director, Rocky Mountain Institute. “As India looks to recovery efforts, clean energy and mobility systems can make a more resilient India by bolstering manufacturing, enhancing the reliability of electricity, avoiding costly oil imports, and cleaning the air.”
The report states that India’s transport sector can save 1.7 gigatonnes of cumulative carbon dioxide emissions and avoid about 600 million tonnes of oil equivalent in fuel demand by 2030 through shared, electric, and connected passenger mobility and cost-effective, clean, and optimized freight transport. Significant savings are also achievable in the power sector.