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Published on November 9th, 2014 | by Smiti


India Eyes $100 Billion Investment In Renewable Energy

November 9th, 2014 by  

The new Indian government is taking serious initiatives to boost the power sector, which is in dire need of financial and structural reforms. A large number of these reforms will be implemented in the renewable energy sector.

India’s minister for coal, power, and renewable energy last week announced that his government would push for an unprecedented $100 billion investment in the renewable energy sector over the next few years. With this plan, he also announced seemingly impossible solar energy capacity addition targets for the next five years.

Piyush Goyal announced that the government has increased the solar power capacity addition target to 100 GW by 2019 compared to the previous 22 GW installed capacity target by 2022. Prime Minister Modi has promised to enhance the solar energy target under the National Solar Mission during his election campaign but this new target is extremely ambitious, and seems virtually impossible to achieve.

Goyal also announced the target to double install wind power capacity to 40 GW by 2019. The target would be part of the National Wind Energy Mission expected to be launched soon. Wind energy companies across the country are upbeat, as two important financial incentives are now available to project developers. The government is planning to open up the offshore wind energy capacity to companies and also promote states with relatively lower wind energy resources as new markets.

The Indian government is hoping to get significant foreign investment into the renewable energy sector, and the power sector as a whole. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) will organise India’s first global renewable energy investors summit in February next year. The government hopes to secure investment worth billions of dollars from international companies during the summit.

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About the Author

works as a senior solar engineer at a reputed engineering and management consultancy. She has conducted due diligence of several solar PV projects in India and Southeast Asia. She has keen interest in renewable energy, green buildings, environmental sustainability, and biofuels. She currently resides in New Delhi, India.

  • Yes ! Yes, we can do it.
    Of course, actual renewable energy programmes like roof solar panels and solar power fields would help, as well as fields of conventional Wind mills, but all of this do not really solves the constant energy India’s needs. These needs will be satisfied with a total new technology and programme which doesn’t need land surfaces or private situation, and which will provide hundreds MW per unit of a CONSTANT renewable power. No country, no state of art can be compared to this programme, and it will allow to reach this ambitious goal, independently, in three years with highest level of competitivity skills by Tar Kovacs Systems (India) Pvt Ltd.. Stefan Tarkovacs

  • be solar energy

    Be solar energy intrusingg in india
    Renewable energy solar power projects

  • Matt

    While I would love to see it 100GWs in 5 years. A couple points of comparison the world pass 100GWs in Feb 2013. World production in 2011/12 was 30GWs and 2013 37GWs; so India would need to do greater 60% of world wide install rate from 2011/2012 in each of the next 5 years to reach 100GWs.

    • Stefano Tapper

      Well lets take Solar as an example:

      They won’t put a tax on the cheap ones China makes; A trade deal between the two to stop relations exploding. PV installed is expected to rise this year from 138,000 GW to just over 200,000 – higher than anyone predicted, maintaining the 40% YOY growth. Yet you are right, the highest installation rate was China last year at 13 GW and Italy 2011 10 GW.

      Perhaps it shall be a slow but expansive growth dependent on technologies (as with most other countries). Maybe they will get to 2019 will use the original date of 2022 but it would allow for a YOY ave of 12.5 GW a year. Anyway if it is $100 Billion , it should do the trick. I remember Italy investing €10 Billion for 2011 and getting the figure above and that was costs then and for the EU; imagine it in 2018, if you get my drift

      • JamesWimberley

        Do you have a link for your 62 GW of solar this year? Most trade estimates are in the 40s.

        • Stefano Tapper

          True and corrected that was a May prediction. If anything the IHS, Epia and IEA prediction for this year could be higher than reality. With all the incentive cuts across Europe and lack of demand in China and Japan. Growth is now reliant on USA and India; oh dear

  • Ronald Brakels

    Good. I was worried that India would continue to build coal plants that would end up losing money once significant amounts of solar and wind capacity were installed, but now it looks as though resources will be going into renewables instead. Very roughly this would increase the amount of electricity generated per Indian by about a quarter. A huge achievment.

    • JamesWimberley

      Not so much an achievement as an intention. Things can still go wrong, but the abandonment of the solar anti-dumping tariffs – Modi’s first major decision in the area – has removed the main obstacle. India surely has a sufficient industrial and technical base to carry off a large expansion of renewables, and many state governments are fully on board. Initiatives have been reported from Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, and Tamil Nadu, following Gujarat’s lead. Renewables have become a no-brainer for politicians. The stuff works, tomorrow – a crucial consideration in a democracy. India’s grid is so unreliable that intermittency isn’t the anxiety is is in richer countries. Irrigation pumps, the biggest rural load, don’t need 24/7 supply anyway.

      However, the battle is not over for coal. Goyal plans to increase coal generation too (link). The reason for hope lies in the notorious inefficiency of Coal India, the steadily worsening geology and rising costs of any mature coal province, and the more-than-suspicion that the company has grossly inflated its reserves like the Saudis with oil.

      • Ronald Brakels

        Indian coal is about to witness the complete lack of pricing power of the now fully inventoried and over producing Australian coal industry! Australian coal is now under $64 US a tonne. That’s a fall of more than 50% from it’s peak just four years ago. Because Indian coal tends to be in effect expensive to extract, low in energy content, high in ash and sulphur, and unreliably delivered; increasing imports of Australian coal is starting to look more economically favorable than relying on domestic production. So instead of the expected boom in Indian coal production the industry will be stuck in a death battle with the world’s most technologically advanced and automated coal mines located in a country where the exchange rate is dependant upon the price of coal and which is run by mad men who use the profits from selling wheat to India to subsidise selling coal to India. This means a weaker domestic Indian coal industry with less ability to push for increased coal plant construction. And while lower coal prices appear to be a good thing for Indian coal power, the overall savings do little to affect the cost advantage renewables have over coal, with how far ahead wind and solar are depending on just what, if any, weighting is put on externalities.

        • Mint

          Indian coal is way, WAY cheaper than $64/ton. You can check prices here:

          Grade G11 (about 17MJ/kg, or 35% less than AU coal) costs only $14/tonne.

          The only reason India imports is that their domestic production hasn’t caught up to demand, but it is growing. It’s a matter of development, not resources.

          Sorry, but saying low coal prices make coal less attractive of a power source for India is ridiculous.

          Fortunately, policy trumps the free market, and it doesn’t matter how cheap coal is if India is committing $100B to renewables through policy. It’s a lot of money, though, as heir tax receipts are only about $220B/yr. I hope they’re not skimping on grid buildout, and hope at least part of that is getting micropower to the gridless.

          • Ronald Brakels

            You may want to read what I wrote again.

          • Ronald Brakels

            Also, you may want to keep in mind that Australian export thermal coal ranges from 6,000 to 7,200 kcal/kg and currently there are 53 rupee to the Australian dollar. I’ll leave it up to you to do the math to work out the price comparison.

      • Viki Kr

        Wow!!! How did you knew so much about India and the state of it’s affairs. My presumption is based on the perception that you are not an Indian/a person based in India. Both no offence meant in my query though!!!

        • Bob_Wallace

          James is a very knowledgeable person. He brings us very valuable information on a daily basis.

          That said, everything in his comment has been reported in the Western media. And we’ve been paying more attention to India recently because many are concerned about India and China when it comes to global warming. We’ve been watching and hoping for some good news.

          In the last few weeks there’s been some very good news out of both India and China.

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