Will there be a sunrise for workers’ unions in India’s renewable sector?

In the 2020 United States Presidential election campaign, Democratic candidate Joe Biden has announced a $2 trillion clean energy plan which focuses on stable jobs in the renewable sector and promised to defend workers’ rights to form unions so that they can collectively bargain for their welfare.

While the issue of workers’ rights and unions in the booming sector is internationally on the forefront, so far there is no major debate in India around unions in the renewable sector, even though the country is also looking at a massive shift to clean energy over the next two decades.

India’s clean energy transition is significant, domestically and globally, given that there is serious international pressure to phase out coal and internal pressure to move towards clean energy to reduce the country’s burgeoning pollution problem.

But the absence of an organised group to ensure the rights of workers, who are either employed in the renewable sector or those who may shift from coal-based jobs, will be a major impediment in this transition.

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