March 29

Analysis: ‘Gargantuan Task’: Why India’s Renewable Push Will Be Hard

By Anupam nath and Aniruddha Ghosal

Plans to build a sprawling solar park on land cultivated for generations by indigenous farmers in India’s Himalayan foothills erupted in violent clashes with police last year after their crops were bulldozed for the development.

Most men from the farming village of a few hundred in Assam state were out looking for work on Dec. 29. One of the few people who remained was Champa Timungpi, who says she was beaten by police and kicked in the stomach when she tried to protest.

Pregnant at the time, the 25-year-old was rushed to a hospital for her injuries. “I came back home at night, and I miscarried,” said Tumungpi, who lodged a complaint with police.

The lush green village in Nagaon district — still largely unconnected to the grid and home to families who earn less than $2 a day — is now framed by blue solar panels, barbed wire and armed guards.

Photo courtesy of James Wheeler.

Source: ABC News (link opens in a new window)

global development, renewable energy, smallholder farmers