World Trade Organization Draws The Shade On Local Solar Projects In India

For Immediate Release

Contact: 
Cindy Carr, (202) 495-3034 or cindy.carr@sierraclub.org

World Trade Organization Draws The Shade On Local Solar Projects In India

GENEVA - Today, the World Trade Organization (WTO) ruled against India’s appeal to its February 2016 decision against buy-local policies in India’s ambitious solar energy initiative. The successful initiative, which at its base offers solar power companies government subsidies and long-term contracts, has already fostered the development of more than 8,000 megawatts of solar power in India. The initial complaint to the WTO was filed by the United States in 2014.
 
Today’s ruling follows on the heels of India filing its own complaint with the WTO earlier this week against the U.S.'s own buy-local policies in eight states' clean energy programs.
 
In response, Ilana Solomon, director of the Sierra Club’s Responsible Trade Program released the following statement:
 
“Today’s final ruling has undermined a successful solar initiative slated to bring us one step closer to tackling the climate crisis while creating local clean energy jobs. Yet the WTO has chosen to look beyond the world’s need for clean, modern, sustainable sources of energy, demonstrating the very real dangers harmful trade cases pose for our environment, our air, our water, and our climate.
 
“With the Paris Climate Agreement on the brink of becoming our new international reality, the world has reached a precipice on our current model of trade: Do we continue with status quo corporate trade rules that are fundamentally at odds with climate imperatives? Or do we stop these harmful trade cases, reject toxic trade deals like the Trans-Pacific Partnership, and collectively move toward a responsible, climate-friendly model of trade? The choice couldn’t be more clear, and the time to act is now.”

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The Sierra Club is the oldest and largest grassroots environmental organization in the United States. It was founded on May 28, 1892 in San Francisco, California by the well-known conservationist and preservationist John Muir, who became its first president. The Sierra Club has hundreds of thousands of members in chapters located throughout the US, and is affiliated with Sierra Club Canada.

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