India is planning to significantly increase the amount of electricity utilities will be mandated to acquire from solar power projects in order to achieve its ambitious target of having 100 GW operational solar power capacity by 2022.
Officials of the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy recently revealed that the Indian Government is considering increasing the solar Renewable Purchase Obligation (RPO) target of 3% by 2022 to 10%. At present the Government has an overall RPO target of 15% by 2022, this includes at least 3% from solar power, while the balance contribution will come from non-solar renewable energy technologies.
The RPO targets indicate the minimum percentage of electricity of all the electricity procured by supply utilities that has to be sourced from renewable energy projects. States are free to set up these projects with clear distinction for solar and non-solar technologies.
It is important for the Government to increase the solar RPO so as to achieve the huge capacity addition target, but so far the implementation of the existing RPO target has been extremely poor. One should not expect any improvement in implementation of the possible new and stricter RPO targets.
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