New Delhi: The Union Power and New and Renewable Energy Minister, R K Singh, hosted a successful meeting with Frans Timmermans, Executive Vice President for the European Green Deal at the European Commission, said the Ministry of Power in a statement. The high-level discussion, held in New Delhi on May 26 centered around strengthening cooperation under the EU-India Clean Energy and Climate Partnership. Both sides emphasised the importance of clean energy and the need to accelerate the clean energy transition globally, it added.
During the meeting, various topics were addressed, including energy efficiency, renewable energy sources such as solar and offshore wind, green hydrogen, energy storage, and the diversification of the global supply chain for the energy sector. Further, the statement also said that the participants also discussed the International Solar Alliance, India's presidency of the G20, and potential areas for collaboration between India and the European Union in the clean energy sector.
Singh highlighted India's growing power demand and the country's commitment to doubling its power generation capacity by 2030. Despite having one of the lowest per capita and cumulative emissions globally, India has emerged as a leader in energy transition and climate action. The Minister stressed the need to add manufacturing facilities for energy storage to ensure round-the-clock renewable energy supply and achieve the goal of net-zero emissions.
Further, the Minister proposed joint pilots with the EU in frontier technologies such as green steel, emphasizing the importance of alternative chemistries like sodium-ion. He also highlighted India's pilot project for round-the-clock renewables, utilising hydrogen and ammonia for energy storage, suggesting that a global construct in this regard would be beneficial.
The Minister called for free and open trade in the journey towards green hydrogen, urging the avoidance of protectionism, said the statement. He emphasised the necessity to increase electrolyser manufacturing capacity and announced India's plans to launch a Production Linked Incentive (PLI) bid for that purpose.
Frans Timmermans, Executive Vice President of the European Green Deal, commended India for its leadership in renewable energy and energy efficiency, said the statement. He expressed the need to promote energy efficiency globally and collaborate on setting global energy efficiency targets. He also discussed the development of industrial ecosystems to foster renewables, highlighting Europe's advancements in solar panels and the growth of the green hydrogen market.
The meeting also addressed collaboration opportunities in grid-scale battery-based energy storage systems, as well as the importance of innovation in heat pumps for heating and cooling purposes. The Minister expressed India's commitment to transitioning away from chemical fertilisers in agriculture and the shared goal of providing energy access to the millions of people worldwide who still lack it, particularly in Africa.
Both sides agreed on the significance of the International Solar Alliance in expanding access to clean energy in Africa and acknowledged the need for a partnership involving the EU, India, ISA, and African countries to address this pressing issue.
Accompanying Frans Timmermans were Ugo Astuto, Ambassador of the European Union to India, along with representatives from the European Union delegation. The Indian delegation included Alok Kumar, Power Secretary, Bhupinder Singh Bhalla, New and Renewable Energy Secretary, and other officials from the two ministries.
The European Green Deal seeks to transform the EU into a modern, resource-efficient, and competitive economy while aiming for net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. It emphasises economic growth decoupled from resource use and ensuring no person or place is left behind. The European Green Deal will be financed by investments from the Next Generation EU Recovery Plan and the EU's seven-year budget.