India Solar Loan Program: UNEP teamed up with Canara Bank & Syndicate Bank to set up lending mechanisms for Solar lighting systems in South India. The project was launched in 2003 and to date, 18,000 households who did not have access to grid electricity have been able to get financing for solar panels. The UNEP press release mentions how this has helped Canara and Syndicate Bank develop a clean energy lending portfolio and also how it helped the Indian PV industry increase market penetration.
This is a great story and it reinforces my earlier thoughts on bringing micro finance and carbon offsets together for greater access to clean energy.
Public toilet assistance for biogas plant:
Sulabh Sanitation gets the award for it's human waste to biogas project.
In Shirdi in Maharashtra, Sulabh has constructed the largest public toilet with biological gas production in the world. Up to thirty thousand people can use the toilet complex per day. The project contributes to a sustainable energy supply using renewable energy source as well as to immensely contributing to the improvement of the hygienic situation. [Energy Globe]
The awards list makes for a very interesting and heartening read. Do head over there if you get a chance.
One thing I didn't quite understand is why Peabody Mining would win an award for its operations in Black Mesa. If you read this NY Times article, you get a very different picture! (registration required)
via UNEP :: via Indic View