The doomsayers are having a field day

But is all the pessimism really warranted?

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Govt earmarks Rs1,000 crore for subsidising solar power generation

The Centre has proposed to declare Chandigarh, Amritsar and New Delhi as 'solar cities' under the National Solar Mission

The Union government has earmarked Rs1,000 crore for subsidising solar power generation, in line with its plan to boost utilisation of renewable energy resources, reports PTI.

The announcement was made by Union ministry of new and renewable energy (MNRE) secretary Deepak Gupta at a workshop in Chandigarh. He said that the MNRE aims to produce 1,300 MW of power from the new energy sector within the next three years.

Speaking on the sidelines of the inaugural function of a workshop-cum-exhibition on 'Deployment of Solar Thermal Systems in Northern States', organised by the Punjab Energy Development Agency (PEDA), Mr Gupta said that the Centre has proposed to declare Chandigarh, Amritsar and New Delhi as 'solar cities' under the National Solar Mission.

In these cities, people would be encouraged to harness solar energy through rooftop panels and contribute to the national power grid.

Stating that there is a lot of scope in the power sector, Mr Gupta said that the Union government is working out a plan to reduce the cost of solar panels by producing components indigenously.

Stressing on the need for effective implementation of solar by-laws, Mr Gupta said that the states should direct every hotel, hospital, community centre and even hostel to use solar water heating systems.

The MNRE is also doing its best to encourage independent power producers, he added.

The workshop-cum-exhibition was aimed at analysing the present status of solar thermal systems, including solar water heaters, and identifying hurdles in the promotion of solar power. Experts also discussed technological advancements, economics, policy issues and different financing models in this regard.

Apart from this, solar water heating systems, solar steam generators, cooking systems and solar passive/energy-efficient buildings were covered in the workshop, particularly in the context of the national rating system being promoted by the MNRE.
 

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India expected to record 7.9% growth this fiscal: UN

In its ‘2010 World Economic Situation and Prospects’ report, the UN forecast growth of 7.9% for India and 9.2% for China. On the other hand, the world's developed economies are expected to collectively grow by only 1.9% this year and 2.1% in 2011, with countries in the Eurozone struggling most of all

The United Nations (UN) has projected a growth of 7.9% for India in the current fiscal as it hailed the country along with China for leading developing nations to recovery from the worst economic downturn since World War II, reports PTI.

In its '2010 World Economic Situation and Prospects' report, the world body has predicted that the global economy will grow by 3% this year and then by another 3.1% next year.

The report of the UN Department for Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) noted that the global economy is slowly rebounding from the worst of the recession but said most of the developed economies remained "lacklustre" and could not provide "sufficient impetus to the global economy."

"While developing Asia, particularly China and India, is leading the way among developing countries, the recovery is much more subdued in many economies in Africa and Latin America," the report, summary of which was released in New Delhi by the UN office, said.

About India, it forecast the growth this financial year to be 7.9% while for China it predicted 9.2% growth.

It said the world's developed economies are expected to collectively grow by only 1.9% this year and 2.1% in 2011, with countries in the Eurozone struggling most of all.

The report credited fiscal stimulus packages and expansionary monetary policies introduced by governments worldwide for the recovery.

Household consumption and business investment are both showing tentative signs of revival and international trade is also on the increase again, although still below its pre-crisis peak.

"The good news is that the crisis in the real economy has abated and we see continued recovery, but at the same time it's weak and uneven," said Rob Vos, director of development policy analysis in DESA said.

He said the "bad news is that there's continued downside risks to this outlook which may lead us to mediocre growth prospects for the coming years."

The report notes that the global economy still contains important weaknesses, with credit flows to non-financial sectors remaining relatively weak, especially in some wealthier industrialised nations.

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