New class of transformative green finance instruments for India

New Delhi – The India Innovation Lab for Green Finance has selected three new ideas for green finance instruments to move forward for further analysis, development, and preparation for piloting. The new instruments for the India Lab’s 2016-2017 cycle could help catalyze millions of dollars for clean energy and sustainable urbanization in India.

Through an open call for ideas, the India Lab received a record number of 72 innovative idea submissions. After an initial screening of these ideas, on February 21st, Lab Members met in New Delhi to select the top three ideas based on their actionability, innovation, catalytic potential, and financial sustainability.

Over the next few months, the selected three ideas will receive guidance from Lab Members and other high-level experts, as well as rigorous analysis provided by the Lab Secretariat (Climate Policy Initiative), in preparation for potential piloting at the end of the India Lab’s 2016-2017 cycle.

The selected three ideas are:

  • Solar Investment Trust: An investment trust to attract more capital at a lower cost to small-scale residential and industrial rooftop solar projects
  • The Matchmaker Service: A platform to match qualified investors with a pipeline of climate-related investment opportunities for cities in India
  • Solar Agro-Processing Power Stations: An enterprise to use solar off-grid systems for agro-processing in villages, to replace diesel-fueled mills or manual work by women. This instrument was also selected in December as a finalist for the India Lab’s sister initiative, the Fire Awards.

27 March, 2017 Update:

Following further discussions among Lab Members, the India Lab decided to take forward a fourth idea for further development and analysis. The selected idea is Sustainable Energy Bonds, proposed by cKers Finance. Sustainable Energy Bonds aims to drive finance to sustainable energy projects by attracting impact investors looking for debt exposure and offering them a set of instruments that provides return as well as standardized impact measures.

“We’re delighted that CleanMax Solar’s idea has been chosen by the India Lab. A solar specific Investment Trust (INVIT) would not only increase the capital deployed in the sector but would also open up segments that have thus far been underserved. Larger issues need to still be addressed to bring the idea to fruition. Access to a network of resources provided by the India Lab will help address these challenges.” – Kuldeep Jain, CleanMax Solar and idea proponent for Solar Investment Trust

“CDP and Climate KIC submitted the Matchmaker Service to the India Lab because we identified a demand from Indian cities to have sufficient access to the private capital they need to meet ambitious climate goals. With the expertise and experience of the Lab Members, we hope to be able to scale up this Matchmaker Service and thereby increase finance streams for climate mitigation efforts in cities around the world.” – Florianne de Boer, CDP and one of the idea proponents for The Matchmaker Service

“We submitted our idea of solar agro-processing mills to the Lab because such a partnership would highly beneficial to our organization to have help developing the India market, and for India to have help developing solar mills for their country, which is so far a very under-developed innovation. Our hope is that The Lab can connect us to both technical engineering, distribution and financial partners within India that can help migrate an existing, functional product from the Pacific Islands to also help benefit women in India by reducing the need for manual processing of staple crops and food, via clean energy solutions.” – Stewart Craine, Village Infrastructure Angels and idea proponent for Solar Agro-Processing Power Stations

“The India Innovation Lab for Green Finance looks forward to helping accelerate these innovative ideas and develop them into transformative green finance instruments. Together, they could catalyze millions in needed private investment for India’s green growth targets, and we’re excited to help put them into action.” – Dr. Gireesh Shrimali, Director of Climate Policy Initiative in India and India Lab Secretariat

The India Innovation Lab for Green Finance is a public-private initiative in India that identifies, develops, and accelerates innovative solutions to drive more investment for green growth in India. The India Lab has been endorsed by the Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. It is hosted and funded by Shakti Sustainable Energy Foundation, with additional financial support from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation and the Oak Foundation. Climate Policy Initiative in Delhi serves as the Secretariat and analytical provider.

CONTACT

Maggie Young – maggie.young@cpisf.org