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Transition Of Funds To Renewable Energy: Setting Directives For The Future

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Burning fossil fuels is one of the major causes of climate change throughout the world (NASA, 2018). As communities across the planet are being affected by the devastating impacts of climate change, it has become essential to transition funds from fossil-fuel projects to the renewables. This is relevant because what the governments are deciding right now will reverberate through their country’s policy for years to come. In effect, setting the directives for renewable energy for the future generations has become very important with large-scale global implications.

According to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), “The energy transition is a pathway towards the transformation of the global energy sector from fossil-based to zero-carbon by the second half of this century.” (IRENA, 2018a) The energy transition has seen remarkable progress in the past few years.

With 161 gigawatts (GW) of newly installed renewable power capacity added in the year 2016, renewable energy has found astounding growth. Modern renewables were accounted for approximately 10% of the global total final energy consumption (TFEC) in 2016 (REN 21, 2017). By 2050, wind and solar technology could account for almost 50% of total electricity globally. The number will rise up to 71% if we count hydro, nuclear and other renewables (Bloomberg, 2018). This is a very interesting development as solar power and energy efficiency can together reduce a family’s energy bill by over 70 percent (RETI, 2018). World leaders are finally realizing that Renewable energy has the power to change the lives of millions with high energy burdens.

The investment in the renewables also has grown significantly. Since 2004, Global Cumulative Investment in the Renewables totaled USD 2.9 trillion (IRENA, IEA, & REN 21, 2018). In 2017 alone, the investment was estimated at USD 279.8 billion, almost all which was in solar PV (57%) and wind power (38%) (REN 21, 2017). These investments resulted in the creation of 500,000 new jobs globally in 2017. Currently, the total number of people employed in the renewable energy sector has exceeded 10 million (IRENA, 2018b). This number will essentially be doubled by 2050 with over 11 million additional jobs (IRENA, 2018a). Last year, investments in new renewable power capacity overtook the amount invested in fossil fuel generating capacity. Interestingly, developing and emerging countries have already surpassed industrialized countries in renewable energy investments (IRENA et al., 2018).

This is a positive development since the Paris Agreement in 2015 where Parties promised to keep the global temperature rise below 2°C above pre-industrial levels (UNFCCC, 2018). But, regrettably, this development isn’t distributed evenly among all the countries. For example, countries like Bangladesh with dwindling natural gas reserve has turned to fossil-fuel (e.g. Coal) for energy generation, despite it being very suitable for mass solar energy production (Azim, 2018). In contrast, corporate sourcing of renewable electricity has spread rapidly across countries like Burkina Faso, Chile, China, Egypt, Ghana, India, Japan, Mexico, Namibia, and Thailand. The wide dispersion of the trend indicates to a role other than “geography” at play. The government is taking an active and conscious role in the promulgation and promotion of renewable energy. But moving towards fund transitions by leaving a large number of countries behind can’t give us a sustainable solution.

In a recently published report on “Renewable Energy Policies in a Time of Transition”, a focus on end-use sectors was emphasized, other than just renewable power generation. The report also pointed out the need for greater policy attention in the use of renewables. It can be focused on dedicated targets, technology mandates, financial incentives, generation-based incentives, and carbon or energy taxes. All in all, the report pointed out that without holistic policies that consider factors beyond the energy sector itself, energy transition can’t be achieved (IRENA et al., 2018).  In this crucial time when some governments are following through their commitments of The Paris Agreement and some are deflecting from the desired path of Sustainable Energy Solutions, we have to set the narrative and directions, before it’s too late.  This is the time in history where we will look back and either be proud or remorseful of our choice on global energy transition.


Azim, M. S. (2018). Energy crisis: The case for renewables. Retrieved September 2, 2018, from

Bloomberg. (2018). New Energy Outlook 2018 | Bloomberg New Energy Finance | Bloomberg Finance LP. Retrieved September 2, 2018, from

IRENA. (2018a). Energy Transition. Retrieved September 2, 2018, from

IRENA. (2018b). Renewable-Energy-Jobs-Reach-10-Million-Worl dwide-in-2017. Retrieved from

IRENA, IEA, & REN 21. (2018). Renewable Energy Policies in a Time of Transition. Retrieved from

NASA. (2018). Global Climate Change Causes. Retrieved from

REN 21. (2017). Global Overview: Global Status Report 2017. Retrieved September 2, 2018, from

RETI. (2018). Solar Energy Creating New Pathways. Retrieved September 2, 2018, from

UNFCCC. (2018). What is the Paris Agreement? Retrieved September 2, 2018, from

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

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A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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