5 Solar Innovations That Are Revolutionizing the World

Solar power is lighting up the world, and not just on rooftops. Forward-thinking minds are discovering ways to harness the sun’s energy in many exciting ways, from the ground beneath our feet to the shirt off our back. The following innovations are shining beacons in a renewable energy future.


These mirrored dishes, located in the Kalahari desert, could be the most efficient solar system in the world. Photo Credit: Ripasso Energy

1. Strides in solar efficiency
Most solar generators can convert up to 23 percent of sunlight into electricity. However, Swedish company Ripasso Energy claims they can covert 34 percent of the sun’s energy into power with their contraption (see photo above), making it the world’s most efficient solar electricity system. According to The Guardian, independent tests found that a single Ripasso dish can generate 75 to 85 zero-emission megawatt hours of electricity a year, or enough to power 24 typical homes in the UK. To compare, to create the same amount of electricity by burning coal would release roughly 81 metric tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere, the newspaper reported.

2. Battery technology and shared solar untether us from Big Power
Elon Musk really is Tony Stark. The billionaire entrepreneur recently unveiled a revolutionary suite of Tesla batteries that he says could “fundamentally change the way the world uses energy” and get us off dirty fossil fuels. Musk’s sister company SolarCity is now offering Tesla batteries at a price point that’s more than 60 percent less than previous solar power storage products, paving the way for more people to peel themselves off the grid.

For people who don’t have the funds or the right roof for photovoltaic panels, peer-to-peer solar startup Yeloha is offering a genius solution: solar sharing. The company allows customers to “go solar” without owning a single panel by essentially feeding off their neighbors who do (and at a price that’s less than what they’d normally pay to their utility).

3. Portable solar brings light to developing world
For places recovering from disaster or communities lacking access to electricity, solar systems provide an alternative or a complement to traditional power sources such as fossil fuel generators (diesel or gasoline is not only expensive, it emits noxious fumes and can cause fires). For example, after the first of two devastating earthquakes struck Nepal, solar company Gham Power deployed solar power systems to help power lights and mobile charging stations for relief workers and the displaced. And in Haiti, the nonprofit organization Field Ready is trying to use a solar powered 3D-printer to make a whole range of simple, life-saving medical supplies at a fraction of the cost.

4. Solar desalination: solution to drought?
Scientists are solving the planet’s fresh water worries with a little help from the sun. Recently, a team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Jain Irrigation Systems have come up with a method of turning brackish water into drinking water with a solar-powered machine that can pull salt out of water. It then further disinfects the water with ultraviolet rays. With parts of the planet running perilously low on fresh water, realization of this technology can’t come soon enough.

5. Solar transportation
In the air and on the road, solar technology is going the distance. Currently, the Solar Impulse 2, the first solar airplane able to sustain flight at night with a pilot on board, is making its historic round-the-world trip powered only by the sun.

Over in the Netherlands, SolaRoad, the world’s first “solar road,” has defied expectations and has generated about 3,000 kWh of power, enough to provide a single-person household with electricity for a year. Considering it’s only a 230-feet bike path, the potential for this technology could be big, kind of like photovoltaic technology itself.


Want to see India leading the way? Join the movement >>grnpc.org/solarise


Let’s Solarize India

35.5% of Indians live with no electricity. India is crying out for a smart, efficient and locally available energy solution.
Join the ‪#‎SolaRise‬ movement and help us power the solar revolution in India! >> http://bit.ly/1XUgZkp

35.5% of Indians live with no electricity. Solar energy is the answer! Join the SolaRise movement and help build a cleaner, more sustainable India! #SolaRise

Hazardous chemical pesticides in our tea!

An investigation carried out by us has found residues of hazardous chemical pesticides in our tea! READ the report: http://bit.ly/CleanChaiAn investigation carried out by us has found residues of hazardous chemical pesticides in our tea! READ the report: http://bit.ly/CleanChai

A total of 34 pesticides were found in 46 samples of tea brands produced and consumed in India. More than half of the samples contained pesticides that are 'unapproved' for use in tea cultivation. 

Activists have been occupying billboards in Mumbai to demand clean tea for 21 hours. SIGN, SHARE and ASK FOR #CleanChai: 

A total of 34 pesticides were found in 46 samples of tea brands produced and consumed in India. More than half of the samples contained pesticides that are ‘unapproved’ for use in tea cultivation.

Activists have been occupying billboards in Mumbai to demand clean tea for 21 hours. SIGN, SHARE and ASK FOR ‪#‎CleanChai‬: 

5 Million Farmers Sue Monsanto for $7.7 Billion

Launching a lawsuit against the very company that is responsible for a farmer suicide every 30 minutes, 5 million farmers are now suing Monsanto for as much as 6.2 billion euros (around 7.7 billion US dollars). The reason? As with many other cases, such as the ones that led certain farming regions to be known as the ‘suicide belt’, Monsanto has been reportedly taxing the farmers to financial shambles with ridiculous royalty charges.

The findings echo what thousands of farmers have experienced in particularly poor nations, where many of the farmers are unable to stand up to Monsanto. Back in 2008, the Daily Mail covered what is known as the ‘GM Genocide’, which is responsible for taking the lives of over 17,683 Indian farmers in 2009 alone. After finding that their harvests were failing and they started to enter economic turmoil, the farmers began ending their own lives — oftentimes drinking the very same insecticide that Monsanto provided them with.

Read More: http://www.whydontyoutrythis.com/2013/03/5-million-farmers-sue-monsanto-for-7-billion.html

Biotechnology Regulatory Authority of India (BRAI) bill stalled again!

We stopped the Biotechnology Regulatory Authority of India (BRAI) bill again!

Two months ago thousands of emails from us asked Minister of Science and Technology, Jaipal Reddy to stop the bill. Before that we registered our opposition to genetically modified (GM) food by saying ‘No’ to it in an online poll. Now the bill is being reviewed by the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Science and Technology, Environment and Forests. [1]

The BRAI bill is a ploy to silence the opposition to GM crops and food in our country. [2] If cleared, the bill will create an autocratic body that will allow GM crops in our country without checking for safety. It will decide the future of our food and agriculture without even consulting us.

So far we’ve not allowed the BRAI bill to succeed.[3] There is however a strong group of multinational seed corporations, like Monsanto, and politicians who will benefit from this bill and want it to get through. They will use their influence to get this bill cleared in the next Parliament session.

We’ve defeated them for three years and we’ll keep doing that till our food is safe from genetic modification. The fight is still on. Let’s do what we’ve done in the past and save our food from harmful GM technology.


Neha Saigal

Greenpeace India

NDTV, please dump Monsanto


We want NDTV to drop Monsanto-Mahyco as partner for it’s new TV series ‘Improving Lives’.

– NDTV in it’s new TV series talks about democracy and improving peoples lives.Then why is it partnering with a corporation like Monsanto known for using unscrupulous means to propagate its trade.

– Monsanto is a controversial corporation hated by people all over the world. Monsanto uses unethical practices and evil money to further its agenda. GMOs are banned in so many countries. There is a lot of resistance to it in India as well.

– Monsanto is known for its agenda to control food and farming as seen in the case of Bt cotton in India. Cotton was once used by Mahatma Gandhi in the fight for India’s independence, now 93% of our cotton is owned by American company Monsanto’s proprietary technology known as Bt cotton.

– NDTV is a reputed news organisation and pioneer in Indian TV news space. It aims to provide accurate news. So why partner with a liar like Monsanto?

NDTV should choose a non-controversial, ethical partner.

Why is this important?

NDTV has partnered with one of the the most unethical corporations and is misleading the people of India into thinking that this series is actually helping the public.

Monsanto has recently got a lot of criticisms from around the world and are trying to clean up their public image, this being one of the tactic.

– 90% of Genetically engineered (GE) seeds are made and owned by Monsanto. Many consumers are against GE food because it has been associated with health risks, loss of biodiversity, increased use of toxic weed killers (herbicides) and other environmental problems.

-Monsanto’s agenda is to turn the world’s agriculture into one big genetic experiment. In most parts of the world (Eg, Europe, Russia, Africa most Latin America and Asian countries) major food companies and retailers are refusing to sell GE foods. There are also many governments who have banned the growing of GE or refusing to import them. In response to the mounting criticism, Monsanto has been making an effort to green up its public image.

However, the real Monsanto is in the business of making money- first and last. Their evident strategy is to make farmers worldwide depend on their patented seeds, herbicides and pesticides. The record, as we demonstrate below, shows that Monsanto does not hesitate to sweep aside everything else…sustainable agriculture, the environment, farmer’s livelihoods and consumer’s interests… if this is required to achieve their goal of market domination.Monsanto guilty as charged for crimes against nature, crimes against the right of farmers to grow, and consumers to eat, GE-free crops and food. NDTV is misleading the nation by partnering with Monsanto on a show that has a message of democracy and sustainability.

Click Here to sign this petition

Is your state a laggard ?

Did you know that our state governments have a target to generate a certain amount of renewable energy every year? Not very surprisingly, most of states have not met these targets. [1]

The Renewable Purchase Obligation (RPO) that sets these targets does not do much to enforce them. So our state governments ignore them and we suffer from power shortage. The Ministry of Power can change this obligation into a mandatory law.

You should send an email to the power minister, Jyotiraditya Scindia, asking him for a strong policy that makes your state meet its renewable energy targets.




The fight against power-cuts has already begun. People in Delhi are asking their Chief Minister for a renewable energy policy. Once Jyotiraditya Scindia starts getting our emails, he’ll realise that people in every State want him to make renewable energy available to them.

We pay so much for electricity and yet we have to face frequent power-cuts. Last year half the country had no electricity because certain states withdrew more power than they were supposed to from power grids.[2] You know that the coal that powers these grids destroys forests, livelihoods and wildlife.

We can save ourselves from all this if our states take RE seriously. It’s not impossible. I lived in a forest for a whole month [3] using solar power. Remote villages in Bihar have electricity through renewable sources. Surely, other states can do the same.

Write to the power minister now to make your state a leader in renewable energy usage.







Picture of Brikesh Singh

Brikesh Singh
Greenpeace India


Save your food – email Jaipal Reddy

The Biotechnology Regulatory Authority of India (BRAI) bill has been introduced in Parliament again.[1] This dangerous bill will create a body that will single-handedly allow the entry of genetically modified (GM) crops into our country.

We’ve stopped this bill for three years, and now the government has introduced it on the sly. Our demand is the same. Minister of Science and Technology, Jaipal Reddy, who introduced this bill, needs to drop this bill right now.

You should ask Jaipal Reddy to drop the BRAI bill because it poses a threat to our food safety.




Farmers, scientists and over four lakh people have been opposing the BRAI bill. Opposition was seen inside Parliament as well. Minister Jaipal Reddy is receiving fax messages already and soon he’ll start getting your emails with the same demand. All this will encourage him to act.

The BRAI bill is riddled with faults.[2] There is no provision for proper a safety assessment of GM crops. It overrides the Right to Information Act and does not allow people to question its decision. It looks like BRAI is being created to shove GM food onto our plates.

This fight to keep our food safe has been won by us before. We’ve been successful in keeping away GM food from our country for ten years! Our massive opposition resulted in a moratorium on Bt brinjal.[3]We even stalled BRAI for three years. So let’s do this once again.

Ask Minister Jaipal Reddy to drop the BRAI bill now!








Picture of Neha Saigal

Neha Saigal
Greenpeace India





People pay for Fukushima. Companies profit


Make suppliers responsible for nuclear disasters. 

Take action now.

Who pays for a nuclear disaster? It’s a question we raised three years ago and secured a strong supplier liability clause in the Nuclear Liability Act in our country.[1] Now Japan is raising the same question.

Sadly, it has come two years after the Fukushima nuclear disaster. GE, Toshiba and Hitachi who built and serviced the nuclear reactors in Fukushima have managed to walk awaywithout paying a dime for the nuclear accident.[2] The cost of the Fukushima nuclear disaster is now being paid by the peopleof Japan.[3]

People all over the world are gathering support for a law that holds suppliers responsible for nuclear accidents. You helped put pressure on the Indian Government to implement a strong supplier liability clause in the Nuclear Liability Act. Your support to this worldwide movement for stringent supplier liability will beinvaluable.

Show your support for a strong nuclear liability law. Help Japan hold its suppliers responsible for the Fukushima disaster.


An official government review found that faulty equipment had a major role to play in the Fukushima accident, which was triggered by the tsunami.[4] So GE, Toshiba and Hitachi are indeed responsible for what happened in Fukushima. Yet they have been able to walk away from their responsibility.

This is unfair and unjust. Hundreds of thousands of people in Japan lost their homes, jobs and communities. None of them have received enough compensation to rebuild their lives.

A strong supplier liability provision like that in India, would have made these companies act more responsibly. We have made India the only country with a strong nuclear supplier liability clause that makes nuclear suppliers liable in case of an accident. Let’s help the people of Japan get justice too.

Support strong nuclear supplier liability now!



Picture of Karuna Raina
Karuna Raina
Greenpeace India

Build a strong opposition to GM crops

They are after our food again. Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar believes that genetically modified (GM) food is good for us. Monsanto, a multinational seed corporation thinks the same.

Inserting alien genes into food crops is not going to solve the problem of food shortage. It will only make food unsafe. We have to keep up the opposition against GM foods so that decision makers don’t force potentially toxic food on us. Let’s start by gathering opinion against GMfood with this poll.

You should answer this poll to help build a strong opposition to GM crops, because the safety of our food is at stake.




We will not be the only people opposing this dangerous technology. The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Agriculture has also said that genetic modification is not a solution for the food crisis. [1] The Supreme Court has also recommended a cautionary approach to GM field trials. [2]Our support will add more weight to their recommendations.

It’s going to be a long drawn battle between corporate and political might and the people who want their food safe. A lot of field trials of GM varieties have taken place in different parts of the country.[3] Monsanto even doctored a scientific review to show that their GM corn is safe.[4]

So far, massive public opposition helped stop Bt brinjal’s commercialisation.[5] It prevented the government from tabling the BRAI bill which seeks to ease the entry of GM crops in our country.[6]

So take the poll now to keep GM food off your plates.







Picture of Neha Saigal

Neha Saigal
Greenpeace India