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Swiss govt to help make Indian buildings more energy efficient

According to reports, Switzerland is preparing a feasibility report on improving energy efficiency in the buildings coming up in India as they are likely to be major contributors to carbon emissions.

Switzerland already has an MoU with the Power Ministry that is aimed at reducing energy consumption in new buildings in India.

“In the energy efficiency sector in India, we see ourselves as providing technical assistance programme. It is largely technology guidance and know how.

“We are looking at knowledge contribution in the energy efficiency space in India,” Swiss Ambassador to India Linus von Castelmur told PTI in an interview.

As part of the MoU with the Power Ministry, the first mission (project) is expected to start in September.

Over a period of five years, Switzerland is expected to advise on energy efficiency related to at least 24 new buildings in various categories.

“We will make a feasibility study on how to make energy efficiency levels in the Indian context. This would be for building including residential ones. We will focus on new buildings, both in the South and the North,” Castelmur noted.

In the coming year, buildings are likely to be the largest contributors of carbon dioxide in India.

Presently, the government has Energy Conservation Building Code (ECBC) in place, which is voluntary.

Switzerland is also focusing on the Indian renewable energy sector and has MoU with state-run power producer NTPC.

“This is for two-stage gassification system of 40 kilowatt and is being developed with Danish technical assistance. This is for power generation (based on biomass),” Castelmur said.

Further, he said Switzerland has helped in innovating many technologies suited for local needs.

“(We have) 700 replications towards energy efficiency. They were technologies innovated for Indian needs with expertise from Switzerland, local expertise and other countries,” he noted.

According to Castelmur, access to finance seems to be difficult for entities – especially small and medium enterprises in India – when it comes to implementing energy efficiency initiatives.

“Also, people need to understand that they can make a difference with their personal behaviour and commitment,” he added.

Switzerland’s global programme on climate is active in India and three other countries — China, Peru and South Africa.

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