UNEP chief hails India’s efforts to use solar energy, curb plastics

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The UN’s environment chief hailed India’ efforts to meet its energy needs through solar energy and curb use of plastics but said that nations still need to do more to save the planet.

Erik Solheim, Executive Director UN Environment Programme (UNEP) said, the year 2017 is “the first year in human history” when more electricity was generated globally from the sun, in comparison to oil, gas, and coal combined.

While hailing India’s efforts during an interview with UN News, UNEP chief said that some of India’s southern states were experiencing “the most rapid economic development anywhere in the world based on solar energy.”

The Cochin International Airport in Kerala is the first ever fully solar-powered airport. Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL), the company which owns and operates the airport, became power neutral in August 2015 with the commissioning of its 12Mw peak solar power plant.

According to information retrieved from CIAL website, the company has scaled up the installed capacity to 30 MWp by April 2018 and by September this year, the solar capacity at CIAL is expected to be increased to 40 MWp, with a power potential of 60 million units per annum.

He also added that “Rwanda, Botswana, and African nations are also doing very, very well” with wildlife protection efforts, but still, it is not adding up to being sufficient for the planet. We need to do a lot more”.