India’s Ministry of New & Renewable Energy has reported progress on the ambitious program of setting up ultra mega solar power projects across the country.
Replying to a query raised in the upper house of the Parliament, Minister for Coal, Power, and Renewable Energy Piyush Goyal stated that his government has give in-principle approval to 27 ultra mega solar power projects across 21 states with a cumulative capacity of 18,418 MW.
The ministry had initially set a target to have 25 solar power parks across various states with total capacity of 20 GW, with each project planned to have at least 500 MW of operational capacity. The current shortfall in the capacity target seems to be the result of paucity of large parcels of land. At least some states had to reduce the size of projects and increase their number, possibly due to lack of require land area.
The program is one of the mainstays of India’s ambitious target to increase the operational solar power capacity to 100 GW by 2022. The government has set a target to have these ultra mega solar power projects operational by April 2019. The total financial assistance the government has earmarked for the program is Rs 4,050 crore (US$623 million).
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