Solar power, green corridor blip on energy radar
Green seems to be the catchword for the government heading into the next year as it gears up to achieve 175 gigawatt of clean energy by 2022 through auction of 1,000 MW of rooftop solar power, Rs. 13,000 crore investment in solar parks and a Rs. 21,000-crore package to boost local manufacturing of panels.
By all yardsticks, 2016 remains a watershed year when solar tariff slumped to Rs. 4 per unit and wind projects received a major thrust. The government is set to switch gears in 2017 to make India a hub for one of the largest installations of clean energy sources by 2022.
Minister for New and Renewable Energy Piyush Goyal offered a glimpse of things to come while speaking to PTI. Scaling up of rooftop solar programme, scheme to encourage domestic manufacturing of solar panels and making wind power affordable through auction of sites all fill up a packed 2017.
Beginning with speeding up the tempo for solar panel installation at homes, schools and hospitals through subsidies in 2016, plans are afoot to expand the rooftop programme to government buildings by providing target-based incentives.
In the November auction of 500 MW, subsidies for installation of as much as 432.7 MW of rooftop solar capacity were lapped up by 122 developers. A fresh tender for one gigawatt (1,000 MW) is now in the works.
The Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government is eyeing generation of 100 GW from solar power alone by 2022. Rooftop solar capacity almost doubled to 1,000 MW in 2016 and the aim is to take this to 40 GW.