MacArthur today announced more than $18 million in grants to support India’s growing national, regional, and global leadership on climate change. MacArthur has maintained an office in India since 1994. The Foundation will provide resources for civil society organizations to work with the Indian government on climate policy, spur renewable energy production by filling critical knowledge gaps, encourage the adoption of clean technology, and explore carbon pricing and emissions trading. This funding marks MacArthur’s initial investment to support climate solutions in India since announcing its broader commitment last year to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and encourage international leadership and cooperation.
“India aspires to bring electricity to millions while also limiting its contributions to global warming,” said MacArthur Foundation President Julia Stasch. “The Government of India has already demonstrated admirable leadership on addressing climate change with the commitments it made in the Paris Agreement. MacArthur enjoys strong working relationships with Indian research institutions, NGOs, and the government, and we look forward to continued productive partnerships and even further progress on addressing climate change in the future.”
Today’s announcement brings to more than $103 million MacArthur’s total grantmaking in support of its Climate Solutions big bet launched in 2015. MacArthur is already focused on building and sustaining sufficient U.S. leadership to ensure that the nation meets its own responsibilities in addressing climate change. The Foundation is also exploring ways to use grants, impact investments, and other tools, to be a constructive partner to other countries, such as China, whose leadership and action are also critical to addressing a more sustainable future for the planet.
The Paris Agreement requires that all participating countries submit new and increasingly ambitious climate plans by 2020 and every five years thereafter. The purpose is to assess whether countries are making sufficient progress toward the goal of limiting global temperature rise to below 2 degrees Celsius from pre-industrial levels. MacArthur’s initial grants are aimed at helping Indian institutions develop solutions through research and analysis; create the infrastructure to monitor and model progress through reliable, high-quality data; incubate and support small- and medium-size renewable energy projects; and explore market-based environmental mechanisms to limit emissions.
“Ultimately, India’s climate leadership will be determined by its ability to follow through on the pledges it made in Paris,” said Moutushi Sengupta, Director of MacArthur’s India office. “So we want to work with Indian institutions in an open, inclusive way to help lay the groundwork and build the capacities necessary to accelerate the country’s transition to a low-carbon future.”
MacArthur’s $18 million investment in 2016 will go to 20 India-based and international nonprofits to support these specific projects:
American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy – $600,000 to work in cooperation with the Alliance for an Energy Efficient Economy in India to develop and disseminate information about state-level energy efficiency policies.
Carbon Disclosure Project – $290,000 to explore carbon pricing by the corporate sector in India.
Center for Study of Science, Technology and Policy (Bengaluru, Karnataka) – Three grants totaling $1.18 million to develop a roadmap for India to achieve its pledges and targets made under the Paris Agreement; develop pathways for at least six Indian states to achieve their full potential in renewable energy generation; and provide a free online tool to help consumers to make informed investment decisions about rooftop solar systems.
Centre for Policy Research (New Delhi) – $480,000 to develop a long-term, strategic vision for climate and energy futures in the context of India’s development challenges.
Centre for Science and Environment (New Delhi) – $506,000 to develop and propose policies and practices, and build public support for expanding the use of energy-efficient public transportation systems.
cKinetics – $245,000 to develop and test a new energy management tool that will assist small- and medium-sized businesses in India develop insights about potential cost-savings from energy conservation.
Climate Central – $1.5 million to expand across India its World Weather Attribution project, which provides scientific attributions in real time about global warming’s role in extreme weather events.
Climate Policy Initiative – $500,000 in initial support for the U.S.-India Clean Energy Finance project preparation facility, which will raise and deploy up to $20 million for solar power projects under consideration for financial support from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation.
Collaborative Labeling and Appliance Standards Program – $1.5 million to work with the Indian government and assist it in expanding and deepening its national program on standards and labeling of energy efficiency on electrical appliances.
Council on Energy, Environment and Water (New Delhi) – Two grants totaling $395,000 to research and model alternate growth pathways for India with the aim of informing policymakers’ technology and investment decisions, and help build India’s greenhouse gas emission and usage inventory for industry, power, and inland transportation.
The Energy and Resources Institute (New Delhi) – Three grants totaling $778,000 to support partnership with a power utility to design and implement a plan to promote energy efficiency measures in the state of Karnataka; design a participatory system of monitoring and verification to track the impact of policies and programs on greenhouse gas emission levels; and develop frameworks, software, standards, and policies for effective integration of renewable energy in the power distribution grid for an Indian state.
Environmental Defense Fund – $500,000 to assist India in developing a comprehensive strategy for improving the country’s air quality.
Institute for Sustainable Communities – $1.25 million to promote industry-leading energy management practices and adoption of clean technology, and improve financing options for energy conservation.
The Nature Conservancy – $880,000 to work with the Center for Study on Science, Technology, and Policy to develop a digital visualization platform to generate land-use maps and scenarios to inform decision makers in two Indian states about the best choices for locating renewable energy generation centers with minimal impact on the environment and forests.
Observer Research Foundation (New Delhi) – $500,000 to work with global experts to map the level of financing required to meet India’s ambitious emission reduction targets and propose solutions for consideration by the international finance community.
Prayas (Pune, Maharashtra) – $600,000 to develop a deeper understanding of residential energy consumption and ways to model different fuel mixes, energy policies, and infrastructure investments to meet anticipated energy demand.
Shakti Sustainable Energy Foundation (New Delhi) – Three grants totaling $1.3 million to convene public, private, and civil society institutions to address the data gaps, reporting requirements, and protocols necessary for India to better address and report its reductions in greenhouse gas emission under the Paris Agreement; make additional real-time data about air quality accessible for the public and expert analysis; and support policy research, program design, and establishment of a new online resource about improving energy productivity across small- and medium-sized firms.
University of Chicago, Department of Economic, Energy Policy Institute – $3.3 million to support a research-policy collaboration in India to pilot and evaluate the impact of a large-scale emissions trading scheme in the city of Surat.
World Resources Institute – $975,000 to help large industrial consumers in India reduce their electricity demand through adoption of energy efficiency measures and procurement of renewable energy.
World Wildlife Fund – $750,000 to support the scaling up of innovative clean energy technologies developed by small- and medium-sized enterprises in India.
MacArthur’s efforts to combat climate change build on its nearly 40-year history in conservation and environmental stewardship, from preserving biodiversity, forests, and waterways to making impact investments and grants that have helped promote and advance energy efficiency and renewable energy.