The Responsible Energy Initiative (REI) is a multi-year programme working to ensure renewable energy in Asia achieves its full potential and creates value in a way that is ecologically safe, rights-respecting and socially just. REI India is the first inquiry launched as part of the Responsible Energy Initiative.

Learn more about the REI programme

About the Responsible Energy Initiative India

REI’s first inquiry is taking place in India in partnership with the World Resources Institute (WRI) India and The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) as core partners. It is supported by expert partners the BHRRC, Consensus Building Institute, Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), Climate Group, Landesa and WWF India.

Who’s involved

Launched on 25 March 2021

Renewable Energy to Responsible Energy: A Call to Action

The Initiative’s first report, titled Renewable Energy to Responsible Energy: A Call to Action, was launched in March 2021. The report provides a broad understanding of the environmental and social impacts being generated by the Indian RE sector and the extent to which these impacts are currently being governed, managed and mitigated. It recognises that many of the challenges faced by the RE sector are systemic, affecting multiple sectors and requiring international alliances.

Download the executive summary 

Download the full report

Watch the recording of the launch event

Launched on 30 May 2022

Towards a Responsible Renewable Energy System in India

Following the Call to Action in March 2021, participants of the Responsible Energy Initiative (India) – leading international and national stakeholders in India’s renewable energy system, including investors, lenders, developers, manufacturers, buyers, associations and think tanks – have, over a year, come together to build a systemic, ambitious and pioneering vision for the value that RE can create beyond mitigating climate change, and the guiding principles to realise this vision.

Read our Vision and Principles

Watch the launch event here

14 February 2023

The Responsible Renewable Energy Summit

The inaugural Responsible Renewable Energy Summit, held in Delhi on 14 February 2023, brought together renewable energy experts, sector pioneers, policy makers, innovators and civil society representatives to discuss how RE can set a benchmark for responsibility and the value it can create for every citizen in India for generations to come.

Organised by the Responsible Energy Initiative together with The Nature Conservancy, Vasudha Foundation, National Solar Energy Federation of India and supported by Climate Trends, the Summit explored critical challenges on:

  • How to ensure that the development of of renewable energy happens in a way that prevents environmental and social conflicts, and contributes to building resilient communities and natural ecosystems;
  • How to embed circularity in renewable energy value chains, particularly as domestic manufacturing ramps up in India; and,
  • How to ensure investments in renewable energy value are creating equitable value for everyone involved: communities, citizens, developers, and the workforce.

Catch up on the insights from the Summit in the recordings

Driving a just transition to clean energy in India

We are turning the commitment of our Vision and Principles into collective, collaborative action. REI India and our cohort of partners and participants have identified actions that can catalyse change, which have been further developed as projects.

Playbook for investing in responsible renewable energy

Led by Forum for the Future

An estimated $30-40 billion in annual investment is required by the India RE sector to meet its target of 450GW by 2030. However, ESG mechanisms are yet to realise their full potential towards aligning economic, social and ecological benefits across all stakeholder groups and the value chain.

The Playbook for investing in responsible RE aims to provide practical guidance to embed responsible renewable energy principles in decision making on RE through close engagement of and collaboration with investors, fund managers and other stakeholders.

Multiple land-use for energy and food security

Led by TERI

A rapid transition to clean energy requires significant amounts of land to increase India’s RE capacity. This project explores and aims to develop a unique socio-technical agri-PV model where renewable energy development contributes to building communities’ capacity to adapt, by ensuring energy, water and food security.

Circularity innovation challenge

Led by WRI India

The rapid production and deployment of renewable energy means that demand for materials, minerals and manufacturing is growing quickly. However, supply chains in renewable energy are not set up to effectively manage the waste that is and will be generated inadvertently.

The innovation challenge aims to create a truly circular RE value chain – one that centres the principles of reuse, repair and remanufacture throughout. Promising innovations that can embed circularity across the supply chain will be tested for viability and feasibility with manufacturers and developers.

A guide to responsible energy development

Led by CEEW

We are developing a living, evolving guide for the RE developers to enhance responsibility, transparency and accountability in project deployment; building on existing mechanisms and through a tiered approach along the spectrum of responsibility. The Responsible RE framework will be based on a comprehensive understanding of the expectations of the communities and experiences of the industry in using other frameworks. 

Responsible RE procurement

Led by Climate Group

Corporate and Industrial (C&I) renewable energy procurement is on the rise globally and in India. The C&I sector consumes over 50% of electricity production, and thus plays a key role in driving a rapid transition to clean energy and responsible RE deployment.

Working collaboratively with C&I buyers who are part of RE100, the global corporate renewable energy initiative that brings together large businesses committed to 100% renewable energy, this project will engage them to set enhanced procurement standards in line with the ambition of responsible renewable energy.

Championing participatory approaches for RE development

Led by Consensus Building Institute

We are developing a set of proactive participatory tools for the RE sector to engage with communities that aim to provide more long-term, sustainable solutions that integrate social, ecological and economic values. The approaches will help mitigate any development conflicts in renewable energy projects, where communities, government agencies and businesses contest siting, operation of infrastructure, and access to water, forest and land; and enable proactive and consistent engagement and contribute to SDGs over the longer term.

Get involved

Reach out to Saksham Nijhawan at [email protected] to find out more about how you can collaborate together with REI India.