“Access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy is the sine qua non to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).” Comment on the progress made in India in this regard. [Answer in 150 Words]
Importance of Energy for Development
- Energy is a crucial resource to undertake developmental activities, and advance living standards.
- However, if it is not affordable, reliable, sustainable and accessible, the goal of sustainable development will be hard to achieve.
- The Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) validates the same, wherein SDG-7 commits affordable and clean energy for all.
- India is a country where the issues of inaccessible, unaffordable, unreliable energy had been impacting nearly 30 crore people (still dependent on firewood etc.). However, in recent years India has made appreciable progress in this regard, which is evident from the following examples:
Progress Made by India
- Various schemes like PAHAL (Pratyaksh Hanstrantit Labh), Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana; Pradhan Mantri Urja Ganga have improved the access and provided better sources of energy to the people, thereby relieving them from the unsustainable and harmful use of firewood and kerosene.
Progress Made by India
- In addition to this there has been progress made by India to adopt and promote better technology that is less polluting, more efficient and supports the agenda of sustainable development.
- For example, scheme for subsidies for solar panels, lamps, irrigation pumps, biogas plants etc. are encouraging sustainable and modern energy resources in various parts (especially rural areas and remote locations) of our country.
- International treaties (International Solar Alliance) for technology partnership; setting up of National Institute of Solar Energy for indigenous research and development are also important steps in this direction.
- The progress made by India in sustainable and modern energy has brought several benefits to the people.
- Example – improved educational activities for children, better quality of life for women, better economic activities for men.
- With aforementioned schemes / initiatives, Government of India is targeting to ensure universal access to affordable energy (SDG goal 7) by 2022.