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Tuesday, 22 Dec 2015
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Solar projects gathering pace


The Union government has approved 27 solar parks having aggregate capacity of 18,418 MW in 21 States/Union Territories, as on 7 Dec 2015. Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal & New and Renewable Energy, Piyush Goyal, in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha stated that the total estimated cost allotted by Government for the scheme for “Development of Solar Parks and Ultra Mega Solar Power Projects” is Rs 4,050 crore


The government has taken the following initiatives to promote Solar Power:


  • Exemption from excise duties and concession on import duties on components and equipment for solar plants
  • A 10-year tax holiday for Solar Power Projects
  • Wheeling, banking and third party sales, buy back facilities by states
  • Guaranteed market through solar power purchase obligation to states
  • No transmission charges and no transmission losses for the use of ISTS network shall be attributed to solar based generation for the useful life of the projects commissioned up to 30 June 2017



The Union government has set a target of adding 175 GW of renewable energy, including addition of 100 GW of solar power, by 2022. The Government has also stated to the UN that India will achieve 40% cumulative Electric power capacity from non-fossil fuel based energy resources by 2030.


Indian and German governments through an MoU, signed in October, 2015, have agreed to expand bilateral development cooperation in the field of Solar Energy by increasing use of solar energy in India through technical as well as financial cooperation. Further, the Cabinet has given its approval for an MoU between India and Indonesia in the field of new and renewable energy. It has also given its ex-post facto approval for signing of an MoU with United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on cooperation in the energy sector.


Recently, Gati Infrastructure announced its plans to raise 100 million pounds (approx Rs 987 crores) in the next few months to power its energy business. The company plans to add 850 MW of renewable energy capacities in states like Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Gujarat.


ADB has agreed to provide USD 1 billion (approx Rs 6,600 crore) loan to central transmission utility, Power Grid Corp for renewable energy transmission and grid expansion in India to build and upgrade high voltage transmission lines and substations in Rajasthan and Punjab.


Upcoming Solar Power Projects


At the micro level, tender evaluation process of the 750 MWp (6 x 125 MWp) solar photovoltaic-based power unit (Phase-II) of NTPC at Kadiri in Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh is under way.


SB Energy, the joint venture firm of SoftBank, Bharti Enterprises and Foxconn, has won its first solar project in India to develop a 350 MW solar power project in Andhra Pradesh under the JNNSM at a 25 year tariff of Rs 4.63 per kilowatt-hour (kWh).


In Nov 2015, Karnataka Solar Power Devp. Corpn. envisaged setting up of a 2,000 MW Pavagada Solar park in Tumkuru district of Karnataka.


Indian Railways also envisioned to source 1,000 MW of solar power over five years, of which 500 MW will be generated through solar panels placed on station rooftops.


Coal India (CIL) has drawn up an ambitious plan of setting up 1,000 MW of solar power generation capacity. CIL will invest Rs 6,000 crore in this venture and intends to fund 70 percent of the required cost through borrowings and the balance through internal resources.


In mid-Nov 2015, tendering process of the “Ultra Mega Solar Power (Gurh) Project” promoted by the New & Renewable Energy Department, Madhya Pradesh envisaging setting up of 750 MW (250 x 3) ultra mega solar power unit (UMPP) in Rewa district of Madhya Pradesh, was under way.


In mid-Oct 2015, Green Energy Devp. Corpn. of Odisha envisaged setting up of a Rs 6500 crore 1,000 MW solar park in Odisha on PPP basis.


Quote of the week:

"In the days to come we are looking at increasing the Renewable Energy output of India by five times”

~Piyush Goyal, Minister of State (IC) for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy"

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