The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Government of India, initiated celebrating National Renewable Energy Day in 2004. Since then, every year on 20 August Akshay Urja Diwas aka Renewable Energy Day is being celebrated to raise awareness about the importance of renewable energy and popularise the need, benefits and uses of renewable energy devices and systems in all spheres of life. The Akshay Urja Diwas aims at promoting renewable energy development programs and encouraging its use as an alternative to conventional energy sources.
The renewable energy, often referred to as clean energy, is derived from natural sources or processes that are constantly replenished on a human timescale. For example, sunlight or wind keep shining or blowing, even if the availability is dependent on time and weather. In addition, hydro-electrical, biomass, tidal, geothermal energy are also some of the renewable forms of energy. The renewable energy sources are carbon-neutral and better than conventional energy sources like fossil fuels, which are exhaustible and take millions of years to get replenished.
Renewable energy overcomes the limitations posed by the conventional non-renewable energy sources. Being a finite source, take longer period of time to replenish, emitting pollutants detrimental to the health of environment and the inhabitants of Planet Earth, are some of the drawbacks that call for switching the energy sources from conventional to the renewable ones.
According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), the contribution of the renewable energy in the mix of energy requirements, globally, shall increase sharply, from 11 percent to over 20 percent by the year 2040. The ongoing pandemic situation has accelerated this pace, worldwide. The world is observing a significant shift in energy spending towards renewable energy technologies, even oil majors are restructuring their profiles by venturing into solar and wind power generation.
Back home, India’s renewable energy sector has witnessed exponential growth in past five years, making her fourth most attractive renewable energy market in the world. As of 2019 figures, India ranked fifth in solar power, fifth in wind power, and fourth in renewable power installed capacity. Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has set a target of 450 GW by 2030; supported by a favourable policy environment, a steady influx of capital and innovations, India can achieve much more than 175 GW by the year 2022.
The Government of India is committed to increase the use of clean energy sources and various large-scale sustainable power projects promoting green energy heavily are underway. In addition, renewable energy holds the potential to create many employment opportunities at all levels, especially in rural areas. The Government of India wants to develop a ‘green city’ in every state of the country, powered by renewable energy. The ‘green city’ will mainstream environment-friendly power through solar rooftop systems on all its houses, solar parks on the city’s outskirts, waste to energy plants and electric mobility-enabled public transport systems.
The administration is all out to embrace renewable energy, now it is our turn to extend all our support and cooperation to this mission. Sensitization, raising awareness and capacity building are the steps we can take in this direction. Every human being, be a student, professional, or a house maker, whoever is sharing the resources of Planet Earth has a responsibility towards humanity, for it to survive. Our sustainable living depends upon our responsible decision-making. Let us make a decision today, for a better tomorrow.