November 22, 2017 Read More →

Solar Emerging as the Leading Force in India’s Power-Generation Expansion

Quartz:

The solar energy sector has accounted for the largest capacity addition to the Indian electricity grid so far this year.

It has contributed around 39%—over 7,100 megawatts (MW)—to the overall capacity additions, according to data from Mercom Capital Group, a US-based research and consulting firm. For comparison, solar energy capacity additions stood at only around 4,313 MW in all of 2016.

In all, the country now has a total solar capacity of around 14.7 gigawatts (GW, 1 GW = 1,000 MW) as of September 2017.

The spurt in solar power capacity comes on the back of the Narendra Modi government’s push for renewable energy, and its target of installing 175 GW of renewable energy (100 GW of this from solar sources) by 2022. “Last year (financial year 2016-17) was a landmark year in the Indian power sector…for the first time, the capacity addition in renewables sector was more than conventional and the same is likely to continue even this year also,” Amit Kumar, a partner at consulting firm PwC, told Quartz.

India’s demand for coal is also likely to peak by 2027, according to an analysis by the Institute for Energy Economics & Financial Analysis (IEEFA), a US-based research institute, the Financial Times reported (paywall). It will be replaced by renewables, which the IEEFA predicts will account for 27% by 2027.

More: Nearly 40% of all new power capacity in India this year is solar

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