The International Solar Alliance (ISA), the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy and the World Bank organised a two-day strategic inception workshop on ‘One Sun One World One Grid (OSOWOG)’ wherein all the implementation partners came together and presented their roadmap for OSOWOG. OSOWOG will be implemented in three phases – ‘Phase I Pre-feasibility analysis’ will include individual Countries’ assessment, Demand Supply Scenario Projections, RE resource potential assessment and scenario assessment for net zero by 2050; Phase II will focus on key points indicating at political process to choose pilot projects, timeline in terms of commissioning the interlinks and lastly Phase III will be towards setting up the institutional framework including draft policy and regulatory papers.
In his keynote address, Shri Indu Shekhar Chaturvedi, Secretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy said, “I am glad that ISA has been involved in the project because it brings in, not only the expertise, but also an international perspective that the deal requires. Honourable Prime Minister of India’s vision is before us and we should do everything possible to realize that vision. In fact, political leadership from other countries have also expressed faith in our vision of a solar grid interconnected with RE across countries. I am happy to see that ISA has taken a lead in collaborating with other countries. Some multilateral announcements are likely to be made later in the year. I wish the inception workshop and study a success.”
Addressing the virtual workshop, Dr. Ajay Mathur, Director General- International Solar Alliance said, “I am absolutely delighted that we are finally at a stage where the inception workshop of this study is taking place. The advantage of interconnecting regional grids to each other provides a huge opportunity in terms of availability of the solar electricity, especially at times in a place where solar electricity is not available from other regional grid where solar electricity is available.
DG ISA further added “This vision was set by the Honorable Prime Minister with the aim of harmonizing affordable energy investments across the world so that we can seamlessly provide electricity across different time zones. Now this initiative can provide the framework of building global cooperation targeted at effective utilization of renewable resources across the globe. I am confident this would help in alleviating power shortfall on one side, and enhancing access, particularly green access through many countries. It would also reduce the loss of surplus energy and ensure a fairer distribution of power. As we move ahead, the International Solar Alliance is proud to look at the feasibility of this approach. We are delighted that in partnership with the World Bank, we have approached EDF to look at this opportunity. This workshop will enable us to discuss the various facets and timelines. We are absolutely delighted to welcome everyone to the first milestone of the 13-month study.”
Under the vision and ideation of the Government of India, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) is the programme support agency, ISA is the nodal implementing agency & the World Bank is the strategic advisory and funding agency for the OSOWOG Initiative. They have a critical role to play in synergizing over 140 countries, across the Far-East and the Far-West regions, to build consensus, launch energy policy imperatives and set up the framework for such a large-scale global cooperation. Other implementing partners include a Consortium led by Electricité de France to conduct the pre-feasibility study for OSOWOG, State Bank of India as the contracting agency and EY as the knowledge partner for this initiative.
Mr Simon Stolp, Practice Manager, Energy-South Asia, The World Bank said, “Through OSOWOG, India has demonstrated its leadership in global energy transitions. India’s commitment to a clean energy future is clear and serves as a lighthouse to the South Asia region and the world. As Junaid Ahmad, India’s Country Director of The World Bank opined earlier, OSOWOG is based on the three critical pivots of sustainability, global interdependencies, and India’s commitment to play its global role. I would like to reaffirm The World Bank Group’s commitment to support India and the global community in achieving this vision.”
The workshop was attended by more than 160 highly skilled experts from world over. Deliberations included discussions between the experts on technical and economic valuation, regulations in different countries, roadmap for 2050 for successfully guiding the countries for reduction of CO2 emissions, intermediate targets for 2030 and 2040, importance of technology improvements HVAC/HVDC, Undersea or overhead lines, losses in transmission, smart operation management, Hydrogen development in transportation, system stability and security of supply.
The project teams working on different aspects of the OSOWOG expressed interest in knowing more about the ongoing initiatives pertinent to the project, in different parts of the world and emphasised on initiating the discussions for building pragmatic solutions with the countries of the perimeter, in terms of roadmap and regulation/power trade organisation. The project team assured the stakeholders that they are aware of the implications that are global and will consider the necessary coordination and coherence of the interconnection development at worldwide level.
The workshop recorded 5 technical sessions over a period of 2 days:
Day 1; 24 May 2021
Session 1 – chaired by DG ISA on Approach on overall OSOWOG: Scope of Work.
Session 2- Chaired by Mr. R N Nayak on Input data modelling, and Power Market Assessment
Session 3- Chaired by Ms. Gauri Singh, DDG IRENA and co-chaired by Mr. Subir Sen of PGCIL on Corridor Identifications and draft roadmap.
Day 2; 25 May 2021
Session 1- Chaired by Ms. Anita George, Executive Vice President, and Deputy Head of CDPQ Global on Institutional Framework for roll-out.
Session 2- Chaired by Nate Blair, Group manager, Distributed systems and storage analysis, NREL and co-chaired by Mr Amit Jain, Energy Specialist The World Bank Group.
Dignitaries attending this coveted workshop included: Dr. Ajay Mathur , Director General- International Solar Alliance; Mr. Indu Shekhar Chaturvedi, Secretary MNRE; Ms. Anita George, Executive Vice President- Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ); K Sreekant, Chairman/Managing Director- Powergrid Corporation of India Ltd; Nate Blair, Group Manager – National Renewable Energy Laboratory; Anil Sardana, MD- Adani Power Limited; Ms. Gauri Singh – Deputy Director-General-International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA); Jagjeet Sareen, Assistant Director General – International Solar Alliance; Praveer Sinha, CEO&MD- TATA Power; Prateek Agarwal- Sterlite Power; Monali Zeya Hazra, Regional Energy Program Manager and Clean Energy Specialist – USAID, Philippe Lienhart, Nicolas Chamollet, EDF and A K Saxena TERI – The Energy and Resources Institute AETS; Ganbold Baasanjav, Head, UNESCO & I/C NAPSI Platform, Fraser Thompson, Chief Strategic Officer, SunCable, Singapore and the team of SUPRABHA led by Nithyanandam Yuvaraj Dinesh Babu.