Supporting green power

The Energy [R]evolution demonstrates how the world can get from where we are now, to where we need to be in terms of phasing out fossil fuels, cutting CO2 while ensuring energy security. This includes illustrating how the world’s carbon emissions from the energy and transport sectors alone can peak by 2015 and be cut by over 80 percent by 2050. This phase-out of fossil fuels offers substantial other benefits such as independence from world market fossil fuel prices as well as the creation of millions of new green jobs.

In India, because our energy infrastructure is not fully developed as yet, we have the opportunity to make the right choices today. We can choose between abundantly available renewable and sustainable energy that is the way the world is going to be powered in the future or the old, dirty energy technologies that will drive India’s dependence on foreign countries for supply of fuel, whether it is nuclear, coal or oil.

Decentralised renewable energy:

In an effort to bring about this revolution, Greenpeace India is working to promote Decentralized Renewable Energy (DRE).  Decentralised energy systems are based on the idea that energy doesn’t have to be generated in one giant centre and then transported long distances. It can be generated near the place it is needed, and often under the control of the people who will use it.

As decentralised energy system serves people locally, it will necessarily be smaller than the huge power stations in a centralised system.  Renewable energy technologies are ideally suited to this type of small-scale energy generation and have the advantage that they won’t pollute the air, water and land of the people who live nearby.  Renewable energy technologies also don’t generate greenhouse gases and therefore won’t exacerbate climate change.

In India, where the vast size of the country and the huge power deficits mean that most people – particularly those in rural areas – can’t rely on their electricity supply, DRE systems are particularly relevant.  The beauty of operating on such a small scale means that the energy supply can be designed to exactly suit the needs of the community it serves.

Depending on the natural resources available, people can choose to capture solar power, wind power, the power of moving water using micro-hydro technology, or a combination of all of three. There are many other forms of renewable energy present in the world too, and we’re getting better at capturing them. Systems can be isolated – these are called ‘stand-alone’ – or can even be connected to the main electricity grid – these are called ‘grid interactive’. Grid interactive systems have the advantage that the owners of the system can actually sell power to the grid if they generate excess, creating another source of income for them, or draw extra power if they find they ever need more.

Examples of DRE systems are cropping up all over India.  In Bihar, over one lakh people are using electricity made from waste rice husk.  In Ladakh, tribal communities are processing their farm produces with machines powered by micro-hydro. In Karnataka, villagers are cooking food on clean gas flames produced by cow manure. We’ve set out to document some examples such as these and will be posting the details soon.

The latest updates

 

Extreme weather warnings

Feature story | September 9, 2004 at 3:30

Hurricane devastation in the US, flash floods in Japan and a UK village washed into the sea. As climate change gathers pace, devastation caused by extreme weather is becoming more common. Take a visual tour of storm and flood destruction.

Solar Lanterns Light up Lives of Young Survivors of Bhopal Tragedy

Feature story | September 9, 2004 at 3:30

BHOPAL, India — The International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal (ICJB) today launched Project Chirag an income-generation initiative for young survivors of the world’s worst industrial disaster. The ICJB has decided on having “hope” and...

Greenpeace exposes the dirty face of Europe's energy subsidies

Feature story | July 29, 2004 at 3:30

BANGALORE, India — Despite innumerable statements about the dangers of climate change and the need for more renewable energy from a host of European institutions, blank cheques are still being written to underpin the industries at the heart of...

Shale oil victory

Feature story | July 21, 2004 at 3:30

QUEENSLAND, Australia — In a world which holds more oil than we can safely burn, why would anyone try to squeeze more out of rocks? And in a world threatened by climate change, why would anyone make a bad fossil fuel even WORSE for the...

A Thai hero for the planet

Feature story | July 7, 2004 at 3:30

PRACHUAB KHAN PROVINCE, Thailand — Charoen Wataksorn was murdered by gunmen outside his home in Thailand on June 22. Charoen was an experienced activist who worked closely with us in the successful battle against proposed coal power stations in...

The Solar Generation

Feature story | June 1, 2004 at 3:30

BONN, Germany — Who are we? Young people who want to change the world! What do we want? Renewable Energy! Make no mistake - the world is heading for climate disaster if we don't change our dirty energy ways soon. The young people of the Solar...

Notes from the Solar Generation Diaries

Feature story | April 19, 2004 at 3:30

DHARAMSALA, India — On 19th April 2004, a group of seventeen people from Greenpeace Germany, Switzerland and India embarked on a journey to Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh, to participate in the first ‘Solar Generation’ project in India. Together...

Vote for a Clean, Green India

Feature story | March 1, 2004 at 4:30

BANGALORE, India — As we head towards the 14th Lok Sabha elections and we challenge political contenders from various parties to show actual concern for their electorate and the environment that they live in. We also invite the people of India to...

Clean Energy Now!

Press release | January 2, 2000 at 4:30

NEW DELHI, India — From around the world Greenpeace today sent a message to the environment ministers of the G8 governments currently meeting in Trieste, Italy, calling for action now to protect the climate. Activists from 14 different countries...

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