Mission Innovation Clean Technology Exchange is a global initiative to catalyse action and investments in R&D and campaigns to make clean energy affordable, attractive, and accessible to everyone within the next decade. It hopes to align progress with goals of the Paris Climate Change Agreement and identify scalable pathways to net zero carbon emissions.
The first phase of this initiative was launched on November 30, 2015, along with the Paris Climate Change Agreement at the 2015 UN Climate Conference as the world leaders came together to commit to ambitious efforts to combat climate change challenges. Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Denmark, the European Union, Finland, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Morocco, the Netherlands, Norway, the Republic of Korea, Saudi Arabia, Sweden, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and United States became the pioneer member countries of this initiative. These members represent >90% of the global public investments in clean energy research and development, with funds worth Rs. 132,032 crore (US $18 billion) deployed since 2015.
The second phase of the initiative was launched virtually at the Innovating to Net Zero Summit hosted by Chile on June 2, 2021. The burning need to achieving goals of the Paris Climate Change Agreement lent an impetus to this initiative even during the Covid-19 pandemic. The 2050 target of limiting global warming levels to <2° C, compared with the pre-industrial levels, requires massive work in energy innovation within this decade. Reduction of emissions is required to achieve the national and global climate targets depending on technologies that exist today but are still in the stages of demonstration or prototyping. These emerging technologies are yet to be sufficiently effective or affordable for large-scale deployment efforts. Mission Innovation 2.0 was launched to harness the potential of these emerging technologies, specifically the ones on clean hydrogen, advanced battery storage, and zero emission fuels.
Key Features and Objectives
The initiative envisages accelerating clean energy innovations by creating a network of incubators across member countries. The network is designed to provide access to experts and market insights vital to developing new technologies and entering global markets.
The enabling framework of this initiative was outlined by members with the following perspective: “In support of economic growth, energy access and security, and an urgent and lasting global response to climate change, our mission is to accelerate the pace of clean energy innovation to achieve performance breakthroughs and cost reduction to provide widely affordable and reliable clean energy solutions that will revolutionize energy systems throughout the world over the next two decades and beyond.”
With this vision, member countries developed an initial launch statement and committed to the following goals:
- Seek to double their government and/or state-directed clean energy research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) investments every five years.
- Work closely with the private sector as it increases investments in the earlier-stage clean energy companies that emerge from government programmes.
- Build and improve technology innovation roadmaps and other tools to boost innovation efforts to understand where RD&D is already happening and identify gaps/opportunities for newer innovation.
- Provide transparent, easily accessible information on their respective clean energy RD&D efforts on an annual basis.
- Increase international collaboration to help focus member resources on the most promising paths by sharing lessons learned, minimising duplication of effort and combining complementary strengths.
- Raise awareness about the need to accelerate clean energy innovation through proactive participation in social media and targeted press opportunities.
- Catalyse global action through public-private missions that set ambitious and inspirational innovation goals that can lead to tipping points in the cost, performance, or scale of clean energy solutions, leading to more rapid technology adoption.
- Build confidence in clean energy solutions through an Innovation Platform by analysing global innovation progress and facilitating knowledge sharing & collaboration to support all countries in planning ambitious clean energy transitions.
- Develop pathways to deployment by actively working in partnership with the private and financial sectors and other initiatives to boost the demand for new solutions and explore ground-breaking opportunities for public-private investments.
The initiative brings together governments, public authorities, corporates, investors, and academia to achieve these goals, and has become the primary inter-governmental platform for strengthening global cooperation on clean energy innovation as part of an urgent and lasting response to climate change.
The government is making a concerted effort to enhance the pace of innovation and scale of transformation in support of a clean energy revolution to meet the requirements and goals for India’s economic and energy security in a timely manner. It plans to achieve this by strengthening and scaling research in existing programs, enhancing international cooperation in priority research areas, utilising public-private partnership models and strengthening capacity building for specific skill requirements.
The government has developed a climate action agenda with the following objectives:
- Deploy 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2022; this will include 100 GW of solar, 60 GW of wind, 10 GW from biomass and 5 GW of small hydropower
- Construct 100 smart cities that will employ renewable and energy-efficient technologies by 2030
- Ensure 20% blending of biofuels in transportation fuels by 2023
To date, India has spent >Rs. 3,176 crore (US $433 million) on research, development, and demonstration of environment-friendly, clean energy technologies across its list of priority research areas. These funds have been invested in the following manner:
Share of Overall Funding
Solar energy, onshore wind energy, offshore wind energy, hydroelectricity, geothermal energy, and other renewable sources of energy
Clean fossil energy and technologies on carbon capture, utilisation, and storage
Bio-based fuels and bioenergy
Power generation and power storage technologies
Energy efficiency and conservation in industries, factories, plants, and residential and commercial buildings
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The Ministry of Science and Technology (MST), Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and research institutes funded by public sector companies are some of the government departments and research agencies contributing to this cause. These organisations are compounding their efforts by collaborating with private sector research organisations, universities, and technical institutes.