South Asian nations meet to address energy efficient lighting to combat climate change

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    energy_efficient_light_bulbsNEW DELHI:The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and United Nations Environment Programme ( UNEP) have joined hands to review the current status and assess opportunities for a transition to efficient on-grid and off-grid lighting in the South Asian region. They will present a report on state of energy efficient lighting in South Asian countries listing projects, activities and identifying obstacles and challenges facing the lighting sector.
    On Thursday, they kick started a two day workshop, ‘transition to efficient lighting in South Asia’ with representation from Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The participants will further examine the economic and environmental benefits from shifting to efficient lighting.

    The initiative assumes significance since lighting accounts for approximately 15% of global electricity consumption and 5% of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions. The initiative partners aim to promote the global transition to energy efficient lighting and support countries to rid the world of at least half of these emissions.

    Under secretary with ministry of power, Arun Agarwal said, “One major initiative in the lighting area is Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yogana ( RGGVY). Keeping its efforts towards more efficient lighting, under this Yojana, while in 11th Plan CFLs were provided, in the 12th Plan, Ministry proposes to provide LEDs that can provide equivalent light quality.” He added that the ministry has been pioneering in providing access and promotion of efficient lightning through its arms such as Rural Electrification Corporation ( REC) and Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE).

    BEE energy economist Ashok Kumar said, “The South Asian countries have similar cultural background, similar barriers, so the replications of a successful model in one country will be very easy for other countries of South Asia.”

    According to the organisers of the international meet, a transition to efficient lighting and the phase-out of all inefficient on-grid lamps in the region would translate into savings of over $3.3 billion per year. Over 48 terawatt-hours of annual electricity consumption would be saved, which is approximately 5.5% of the total regional electricity consumption in South Asia and more than 36% of electricity consumption for lighting. In addition, 43.2 megatonnes of CO2 emissions would be eliminated each year.

    A transition to efficient off-grid lighting in the region would have an equally significant benefit for the 470 million consumers in South Asia who are not connected to the grid. Replacing all the kerosene, candles and battery-powered torches with solar LED lanterns would save US$5.6 to 7.6 billion in fuel costs and avoid the emission of 22.9 million tonnes of CO2 emissions each year, read a media statement from TERI.

    United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) communication officer Laura Fuller said, “To achieve a permanent and sustainable transition to efficient lighting, countries should follow an integrated policy approach that includes: minimum energy performance standards; supporting policies; monitoring, verification and enforcement activities; and the environmentally sound management of lighting products. We are encouraged that the countries within South Asia are willing to follow this model.”

    Source : The Economic Times