Shimla: A World Bank team led by Mr. John Roome, Regional Director (Sustainable Development), South Asia Region, met Chief Minister, Thakur Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu here today to discuss the states Green agenda and the measures needed for achieving a ‘Green Energy State’ target by 2025.
The World Bank team indicated that it was keen on the states Green Resilient Integrated Development by adopting a basin approach that would entail a cost of about Rs. 2500 crore (300 Million US dollars), which could be further enhanced
Speaking about the programme, the chief minister said that it would be a landmark for transformation of State into a Green Resilient Himachal..
“To achieve the target, the State has fixed a time-bound action plan of ensuring installation of 200 MW solar power energy projects over the next nine months. We will acquire more land for the installation of 500 MW solar power by 2024 year end”, said Sukhu.
Transformation towards adoption of Electric Vehicles in the State is of utmost priority and hopes for generous contribution and launch of some key programmes from the World Bank for this purpose, said Sh. Sukhu. Making his intentions clear, Chief Minster said that maximum departments would be switched over to Electric Vehicles (EVs) by next year in the first phase.
Apart from this the Chief Minister also indicated to the team that the State is all set to go ahead in line with National Green Hydrogen Energy Mission in a big way apart from the production.
Though the technique of production of Green hydrogen is expensive yet the government will consult Indian Oil Corporation for the same as IOC has taken the first significant step towards Green Hydrogen Economy in India with the commissioning of country’s first pure Green Hydrogen pilot plant in Northeast. The Government is committed to make Himachal as the first non-polluted State by reducing carbon emissions completely, claimed Chief Minster.
Mr. John Roome appreciated the farsightedness of Sh. Sukhu for achieving a target of Green and Clean State and said that such commitment and initiatives were a good beginning and wished success in this direction. He said that the EV policy envisioned by the Chief Minister would be taken up on priority and shortly a team from the Bank would visit the state for technical analysis.
Discussions about the future plan of action of the World Bank in the implementation of various programmes in the State focusing on Sustainable Forest Management, Community Forestry, Ecosystem Services, and Disaster management along the Basins, Water Resource Management, Nature-Based Tourism and Payment on Ecosystem Services were also held. The World Bank agreed upon providing its support in the implementation of proposed projects.
Chief Parliamentary Secretary Sanjay Awasthi, Chief Secretary Prabodh Saxena and other senior officers attended the meeting.