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

 

LIMA COP 20: Hope and an opportunity for India

Blog entry by Abhishek Pratap | December 1, 2014

It’s that time of the year again when climate and its politics get prominence! Starting today and for the next two weeks, official negotiators, bureaucrats, technocrats, think-tanks, activists, civil society, corporate honchos, trade...

The Largest Climate March in History is Coming to a City Near You

Blog entry by Pujarini Sen | September 17, 2014

What: The largest public demonstration demanding action on climate change is just 3 days away. When: The People's Climate March will take place on the 21st of September, 2014, just two days before UN Secretary General Ban Ki...

Power from the Sun: A new life for Dharnai, India

Blog entry by Neha Khator and Ruhie Kumar | July 20, 2014

In this world where we seem surrounded by news of gloom and doom, we don't often hear stories of positive change. But here is one: a story of a village that has unshackled itself from darkness, after 30 years of having its energy...

Quality Defines Success in Dharnai

Blog entry by Anand Prabu Pathanjali | July 16, 2014

The success of a microgrid largely depends on the quality of components used right from the generation, transmission and storage. For example, in the microgird installed at Dharnai, we have used a grade A solar panel with the...

Mahan’s chota sipahi

Blog entry by Aafreen Ali | June 9, 2014

He caught my attention when he introduced himself as "main yahain ka sabse chota sipahi hu" and in my short stay I saw that this wasn't just an empty statement but he lived up to it. When kids his age were running around playing...

Bring in the sun to protect Mahan and India’s forests from coal mining

Blog entry by Abhishek Acharyya | May 30, 2014

It was the last time I saw the sun rise in Budher. When I woke up that day, I just could not control my tears. Next day I was going to be hundreds of miles away in Sonar Bangla from where I would see the sun rise from a train window...

Why the world's biggest coal company has backed down

Blog entry by Deng Ping and Harri Lammi | April 8, 2014

Last year, Greenpeace decided to do something we had never done before during our 13 years of work in China: target and confront a state owned coal company. And not just any company. The biggest and boldest, a Chinese government...

Start to clean energy in Bihar

Blog entry by Ruhie Kumar | December 16, 2013

Hasanchak & Govindpur, district Vaishali, Bihar 15 years ago, there was electricity in Hasanchak. Today, the infrastructure remains but the electricity supply is gone. The farmers have only one mode of power - diesel. A diesel powered...

Crisis to Solution - paving way to Solar pumping

Blog entry by Ruhie Kumar | December 12, 2013

The Innovation Challenge was launched on 3rd September, and ended on 15th November. The challenge was different - it invited submissions from all over the world to do something unique, something that could transform the way our...

Cyclone Phailin; a disaster uncalled for

Blog entry by Abhishek Pratap | October 17, 2013

In an earlier protest Greenpeace activists project a message to stop climate change on a cooling tower of the National Thermal Coal Plant. The morning after Cyclone Phailin struck the east coast with all its fury, the newspapers had...

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