India targets 175 GW renewable energy by 2022

On 19 July, the Indian Ministry for New and Renewable Energy released a press statement saying that the Government has set a target to install a 40 GW (GigaWatts) of grid-connected rooftop solar capacity in the country, including Delhi and National Capital Region (NCR) by the year 2022.

The power segment in India is undergoing radical change on account of the government's move towards power generation through renewable energy resources. Increasing electricity consumption and surging awareness towards the environment are together helping the country towards optimal utilisation of green energy resources, specifically solar energy. In an official press statement released last month, the Ministry announced a short-term offshore wind energy target of 5GW by 2022 and a medium-term target of 30W by 2030.

According to the Delhi Solar Policy, 2016 released by the Department of Power under the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD), a target has been set for the installation of 1 GW of solar power by the year 2020 and 2 GW of solar power by the year 2025 in Delhi. The policy stated that India needs to focus on increasing the production of clean and renewable energy in the country to reduce combat climate change, reduce air pollution and enhance energy security. The GNCTD intends to rapidly develop decentralised renewable energy sources, especially solar and reduce its current dependence on unsustainable and centralised fossil fuel energy.

The solar inverter market has also grown exponentially over the last few years as a result of an increase in the implementation of solar energy projects in the country. The National Solar Mission, aiming to achieve 100 GW of solar energy by 2022 has further fuelled the solar inverter adoption and is expected to increase the market in proportion with the growing solar industry in India.

The Government has set a target to install 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by the year 2022 has been set, which includes 100 GW from solar, 60 GW from wind, 10 GW from bio-power and 5 GW from small hydro-power.

The press release noted that in 2014, the Ministry of Urban Development requested all of India’s states and union territories to issue necessary directives to State Government Departments to use rooftop of buildings under their control for solar power generation on a mandatory basis and also to local bodies under their jurisdiction to incorporate the similar provision in their building bye-laws so that installation of Roof Top Systems (RTS) on rooftops of all types of buildings in their jurisdiction may become mandatory.

Additionally, the Ministry of Urban Development issued a document titled Model Building Bye-Laws, in 2016, which outlined suitable provisions for installation of RTS on buildings. The states and union territories of Haryana, Chandigarh, Uttar Pradesh and Chhattisgarh have already issued mandatory notifications for the installation of RTS in different categories of buildings.

The Capacity Utilisation Factor (CUF) of solar power projects is less than thermal, hydro, nuclear, wind and biomass power projects. The Government has launched a number of initiatives for the promotion and development of renewable energy including solar energy in the country.  

The press release also stated that the Government is promoting the development of solar energy in the country by providing various fiscal and promotional incentives such as accelerated depreciation, a waiver of Inter-State Transmission System (ISTS) charges and losses, financing solar rooftop systems as part of home loans, and permitting Foreign Direct Investment up to 100% under the automatic route.

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