Solar power may promise a bright future for India’s energy requirements, but behind the sheen is a growing mountain of waste. While the national government is pushing an ambitious solar power programme for India, it has, so far, failed to put in a mechanism to address the problem of waste, including environmentally hazardous materials, from solar photovoltaic panels that can be hazardous to the environment.
A recent report by renewable energy consulting firm Bridge to India (BTI) said that the solar photovoltaic (PV) panels waste volume in India is estimated to grow to 200,000 tonnes by 2030 and around 1.8 million tonnes by 2050 – almost 200 times the weight of the Eiffel Tower.
India’s current solar power target is 100,000 megawatts (100 gigawatts) by 2022, raised from 20,000 MW in June 2015 by the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government. This 100-gigawatt target includes 40 GW rooftop and 60 GW through large and medium grid-connected solar power projects and India has advanced towards this target with the installed solar power capacity increasing from 2,631.93 MW in March 2014 to 28,180.71 MW in March 2019. Read more
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