Published on November 26th, 2014 | by Mridul Chadha2
1.5 GW Rooftop Solar Power Capacity In India By 2018, Says Report
November 26th, 2014 by Mridul Chadha
The boom in the Indian solar power industry will extend to the rooftop solar power segment as industries and commercial consumers look to take advantage of the falling solar power prices.
Through changing industrial and policy dynamics, India looks set to install 1.5 GW of rooftop solar power capacity by 2018, a recent report by consultancy Bridge to India reported. The current installed capacity is just under 300 MW, with most of the projects located in the southern part of the country.
Rooftop solar power technology is popular mostly among industrial and commercial users. Southern India has been and remains power-deficient, forcing consumers to set up their own power systems. Tamil Nadu has the largest share of installed capacity, at just under 18% of the total national installed capacity.
The fact that only 13% of the installed projects have received a capital subsidy from the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy proves that the rooftop solar segment looks financially viable and has tremendous potential to grow.
Bridge to India notes that, while that expansion in the industrial and commercial space is driven by underlying financial benefits, the limited yet encouraging growth in the residential sector is driven by the need to access electricity. This could, however, change in the near future.
Several state governments have formulated net metering and feed-in tariff schemes to promote rooftop solar power in the residential sector. As the cost of electricity generated from conventional sources rises, residential consumers may turn to rooftop solar power systems to reduce their costs and earn potential revenue from generation and sale of surplus power.
Under the National Solar Mission announced in 2010, India plans to install 2 GW distributed solar power capacity by 2022. However, this figure is set to be revised upwards to 100 GW as the current government aims to provide electricity access to all households by the end of this decade. Additionally, state governments are also implementing policies to cover rooftops of public buildings with PV systems and other innovative initiatives like “rent-a-roof,” where property owners can lease unused space to companies to set up rooftop solar PV systems.
Charts via the Bridge to India report.