Govt Spells Out Roadmap To Achieve 175 GW Renewable Energy Targets

Govt Spells Out Roadmap To Achieve 175 GW Renewable Energy Targets

Anupama Airy

Silencing critics, the BJP led Modi government is confident of not just achieving the ambitious targets of developing 175 Giga watt or 1,75,000 mega watt of renewable energy capacity in India but far exceeding it.

Union Minister of State (IC) for Power and New & Renewable Energy, Raj Kumar Singh on Friday shared a detailed roadmap for achieving this target of commissioning 175 GW of Renewable Energy (RE) that includes 100 GW of solar generating capacity and 60 GW of wind power in the country by 2022.

In a bid to encourage the Make in India initiative in the RE sector, Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE) has worked a scheme and will soon issue an Expression of Interest (EoI) to the Industry for establishing domestic Manufacturing facilities to the tune of 20GW, in the near future.

Alongside, the MNRE is exploring ways to achieve additional installed RE capacity through Floating Solar Power Plants over dams, Offshore Wind Energy Systems and Hybrid Solar-Wind power systems, which may provide over 10GW additional capacity.

The MNRE team of experts has already surveyed the Bhakra Nangal dam for floating solar power plants and off-shore Gujarat and Tamil Nadu for wind power plants, the Minister announced.

Minister Singh expressed confidence of comfortably achieving “a rather conservative RE target of 175GW by 2022” as he was confident of exceeding this target along with providing 24×7 affordable, clean and efficient power for all.

Singh said that all these targets would be positively achieved with the cooperation of the States in ensuring that their power utilities/ DISCOMS remain financially viable.

Presently, India’s total installed generation capacity is around 330GW, out of which the coal based power stations in the country generates 193GW. Clearly, India relies a lot on thermal power generation and 80 per cent of its electricity is coal based power. In comparison, hydro power share is 10 per cent while renewables is just seven per cent.

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Given the rising environmental concerns and Coal based generation, India’s shift to green energy and decarbonisation policy has been acknowledged across the globe.

To achieve the RE targets, the Centre has already provided all the required support, including funds under Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Gram Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY) and Integrated Power Development Scheme (IPDS), to the States to ensure 24×7 Power for All by strengthening the intra-State transmission networks and by ensuring mandatory presence of metered connections.

Minister Singh added that the Ministry is in talks with the States to ensure 100% metered connections through Smart/Pre-paid meters.

Talking about issues in Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs), Singh made it very clear that the sanctity of the PPAs have to be ensured and they would have to be mandatorily honoured.

“The Ministry is in constant talks with State Governments, including Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, to ensure the same,” he said.

Talking about the Renewable Purchase Obligations (RPOs), the Minister that these obligations are mandatory and need to be adhered to strictly

Elaborating on the RE Development road map , Anand Kumar, Secretary MNRE, said that for achieving 100 GW solar power target by 2022, the Ministry, along with the States, would lay out bids for ground mounted solar parks for 20 GW in 2017-18, out of which 3.6 GW have already been bid out, 3 GW will be bid out in December 2017, 3 GW will be bid out in January 2018, 5 GW in February 2018 and 6 GW in March 2018. 30 GW will be bid out in 2018-19 and 30 GW in 2019-20.

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Further, Kumar informed that against the target of 60 GW for wind power, 32 GW have already been commissioned. The Central Government in participation with the State Governments intends to issue bids of cumulative capacity of about 8 GW this year.

Out of this, 5 GW (including present 2 GW) have already been bid out, 1500-2000 MW will be bid out in January 2018 and 1500-2000 MW in March 2018.

A total of 10 GW will be bid out in the financial year 2018 and 10 GW in 2019, leaving a margin of 2 years for commissioning of projects. Further adding to this, Kumar informed that the Ministry would soon be issuing the Wind Bidding Guidelines.

Secretary Kumar also said that with wind power tariffs becoming competitive and State DISCOMs encouraged to buy more of Renewable Energy power, the Government has doubled the auction capacity for the third national level wind auction from 4GW last year to around 9GW in the current year.

Regarding clarity on GST rates on Solar panels, Mr Kumar said that the MNRE is in talks with the Ministry of Finance and in the next 7-10 days all the issues would be resolved.

The present scheme of Wind Power Auction is for setting up of 2000 MW Wind Power Project connected to Inter-State Transmission System (ISTS).

The bidder can bid for a minimum capacity of 50 MW and maximum up to 400 MW. The projects under this scheme are expected to be commissioned towards the end of 2019.

Power Sale Agreements (PSA) for purchase of wind power under second wind auction with States were also signed on Friday with Solar Energy Corporation of India with utilities of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Assam, Punjab, Goa and Odisha.

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The reverse auction for SECI-II wind bid was conducted on 4th October 2017, which resulted in very competitive tariff of Rs.2.64/2.65 per unit.

It may be mentioned that the winners of SECI II wind bid namely Renew Power (250 MW at Rs.2.64/unit), Orange (200 MW at Rs.2.64/unit), Inox (250 MW at Rs.2.65/unit), Green Infra (250 MW at Rs.2.65/unit) and Adani Green (50 MW at Rs.2.65/ unit) would be setting up wind power plants in states of Gujarat, TN and MP to sell power to these utilities. PPAs with these winners are expected to be signed shortly.

Anupama Airy
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Anupama Airy

Founder and Editor at EnergyInfraPost
Independent Journalist and Energy Expert.​ (Worked with leading mainline financial and national daily for 23 years.​)​ Also, Guest Contributor with busines​sinsider.in
Currently, Writing a Book for Penguin India Titled Greased Pole:How Politics and Lobbying Stifled India's Energy Dreams. The author can be reached on anupama.airy@gmail.com (9810661825)​
Anupama Airy
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