Dr Harsh Vardhan reiterates India’s pledge to pursue a sustainable future through research-led innovations at Mission Innovation event today
New Delhi: Union Minister of Science & Technology, Earth Sciences, Health and Family Welfare, Dr Harsh Vardhan today said, “As we move on to Mission Innovation 2.0, I would like to reiterate on behalf of my government that India remains committed to providing resources for strengthening the Mission and all its platforms to bring a transformational change in the energy domain. I’m very confident that by the time India hosts the 8th Ministerial of Mission Innovation in 2023, these instruments will have delivered remarkable clean energy solutions while facilitating capacity building, knowledge exchange and scientist exchange programs”. Dr Harsh Vardhan hoped “ I’m sure Mission Innovation will develop and scale up collective efforts towards achieving more significant objectives in its second phase and wish the entire Mission Innovation fraternity all success in its new endeavors”.
Dr. Harsh Vardhan was addressing the Mission Innovation (MI) Senior Official Gathering today via Virtual Platform in New Delhi today. Mr Patrick Child (Chairperson, Mission Innovation Steering Committee, European Commission) gave opening remarks. Dr Renu Swarup, Secretary, Department of Biotechnology (DBT),and Senior Officials of DBT and DST were also present on occasion. Members and senior representatives from Mission Innovation Countries and international agencies also participated in the meeting. The meeting’s objective is to reflect on progress, set the scene for the discussions towards an ambitious next phase of Mission Innovation.
Mission Innovation was announced on 30th November 2015, as world leaders came together in Paris to undertake ambitious measures to combat climate changes.Mission Innovation (MI) is a global initiative of 24 countries and the European Union to accelerate global clean energy innovation dramatically. The first phase has shown that work done under Innovation Challenges (ICs) have mobilized in a relatively short period, relying on members’ leadership and voluntary efforts to advance IC objectives. These resources have dramatically accelerated the availability of the advanced technologies that will define a future global energy mix which is clean, affordable, and reliable.
Speaking on occasion, the Minister lauded Mission Innovation’s contribution for accelerating clean energy innovation and emphasized Mission Innovation’s role in mobilizing greater public and private investments and partnerships to move the innovation needle. Dr Harsh Vardhan mentioned about India’s tradition to preserve climate and goal of achieving growth inspired by need. He also mentioned the success stories and Govt . of India initiatives for the creation of a strong start-up innovation eco-system in the country through the Clean Energy International Incubator. The Minister underlined the importance of collaborative scientific efforts to realize the vision of affordable and reliable clean energy system and reiterated India’s pledge to pursue a sustainable future through research-led innovations. Dr. Harsh Vardhan emphasized the need to strengthen the collective efforts towards more significant MI 2.0 and wished MI fraternity all success in its new phase and new endeavours.
Elaborating further, Dr. Harsh Vardhan said, “In the coming decades, history will remember 2020 as the year of remarkable scientific efforts and innovation.As the pandemic threw one challenge after another across various fields like logistics, trade, medicine and numerous others, it has been the unique out of box solutions provided by innovators all across the world which have helped save millions of lives and livelihoods”. “In my humble opinion, bringing to the fore, the necessity as well as capability of innovative thinking to transform the world is indeed one of the silver linings that has emerged from this ruthless pandemic”. He underlined. He also highlighted, “India has long been fostering innovations and nurturing an enabling ecosystem to incubate and scale revolutionary ideas, help improve the quality of lives of people and provide solutions to global problems”, and added, “India has played a leadership role in MI Steering Committee and is a member of the Analysis and Joint Research and Business & Investor Engagement sub-groups”.
He said, “India has increased solar installed capacity by 13 times and expanded its non-fossil fuel-based power generation to 134 Gigawatts, about 35% of our total power generation. India has embarked on an ambitious target of having 450 Gigawatts of renewable energy by 2030 and is confident of achieving this”. The Minister pointed out, “Renewables are no longer fringe-sources, but have become a mainstay of the energy mix. They are now critical both from an environmental and energy security point of view”.
Stating that many countries have shown interest to emulate India’s successful journey in the last few years in solar energy, Dr. Harsh Vardhan informed, “India is also working to considerably increase the proportion of the biofuel blend in petrol and diesel. We have embarked upon the world’s most extensive clean cooking fuel programme called ‘Ujjwala Yojana’, releasing around 150 million connections so far”. He said, “Five Centres of excellence in Bioenergy supported by Department of Biotechnology in India are working on both fundamental and translational research for advanced bio-fuels like biobutanol, biohydrogen and biojet fuels”.
Dr Harsh Vardhan pointed out that during the first phase of Mission Innovation, we have been able to bring remarkable positive impact by strengthening our relationships using several innovation-driven business-models, collaborative research development and demonstration, capacity building and substantial investments which have been exponentially increased during the last five years. The Minister further explained, “To support the start-up innovation ecosystem, the Clean Energy International Incubation Centre established by the Department of Biotechnology, India under a Public Private Partnership model has played a crucial role. Clean energy challenge for scouting ideas to be incubated has resulted in 25 winning solutions covering wide range of clean energy technologies”. He also highlighted that India and Sweden under a partnership have developed an Avoided Emission Framework for a sustainable future. Under this partnership, eight companies have been selected to demonstrate an initial 100 million tons of potential CO2 emission reduction by 2030. The Minister concluded by saying, “we are moving towards a user-oriented “Mission approach” that focuses on converting outputs into impacts and wholeheartedly support this strategy”. He emphasized, “To build on the success achieved thus far, India is committed to continuing with existing innovation challenges and developing a global network of incubators to support the start-up ecosystem through the Collaborate & Accelerate Module of the Innovation Platform”.