Renewable energy – India’s way forward

Pic: Min of New /Renewable Energy

By Prakash Chawla

New Delhi, Dec 30 2021

It goes to our credit that India has achieved Renewable Energy capacity exceeding 150 GW , meeting well in advance its global commitment of installing 40 per cent of its total energy capacity in the form of RE. India had committed itself at the UN’s COP 21 that the country would have non-fossil energy accounting for 40 per cent of its total installed capacity by 2030. This commitment has been achieved almost a decade in advance.

As in November, 2021 , India has installed Renewable Energy (RE) capacity of 150.54 GW : The break- up is as follows:
wind: 40.03 GW, small hydro Power: 4.83, Bio-power: 10.62, large hydro: 46.51 GW) while its nuclear energy based installed electricity capacity stands at 6.78 GW, according to official statement.

India’s renewable energy programme is driven by private sector investment. As per REN21 Renewables 2020 Global status Report , during the period 2014 -2019 renewable energy programmes and projects in India attracted an investment of US$ 64.4 billion. In the year 2019 alone, US$ 11.2 billion were invested. New opportunities have emerged, and altogether new business space has been created. Indian companies have begun to explore foreign stock exchanges as a source of funds. India is progressively becoming a favored destination for investment in renewables, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy said in its year-end review. However, there are several challenges, as listed below.

Land acquisition: Land acquisition is one of the major challenges in renewable power development. Identification of land with RE potential, its conversion (if needed), clearance from land ceiling Act, decision on land lease rent, clearance from revenue department, and other such clearances take time. State governments have to play a major role in acquisition of land for RE projects.

Creating an innovation and manufacturing eco-system in the country; Integrating larger share of renewables with the grid;
Enabling supply of firm and dispatchable power from renewables; Enabling penetration of renewables in the so called hard to decarbonize sectors. Some Steps by MNRE for facilitating RE Sector amid COVID-19 Pandemic:
Ensuring uninterrupted operation of Renewable Energy (RE) Plants in lockdown

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