The fast-growing economy of India has already seen 25000 MW of installed renewables, making it the fifth-largest player of clean energy solutions across the globe.
India is seeking to add momentum to a roll-out that had already accelerated sharply over the past few years, Gireesh B Pradhan, Secretary of the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) said while addressing a conference in Johannesburg organised by the Indian High Commission.
India has an installed base of renewables that surged to its current level of 12 per cent of the country’s 200000 MW power capacity from a modest 3600 MW in 2003. Pradhan attributed such expansion mainly to the renewable purchase obligation (RPO) that made it compulsory for distribution utilities to procure a certain percentage of renewables from generators. The government would be looking to increase the penalties on distributors failing to meet the obligation, he added. However, Pradhan also stressed the investment climate in India is friendly amid the Ernst & Young’s ‘Renewable Energy Attractiveness Index’ where India was ranked fourth.
Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) co-chair Deepak Puri, who led the delegation of about 70 Indian renewables executives to South Africa, indicated that India’s untapped wind, solar, biomass and small hydro resources remained considerable. Puri, who heads Moser Baer India and is also chair of CII National Committee on Renewable Energy, said that Indian companies are also keen to participate in South Africa’s renewables programme.
Under South Africa’s Integrated Resource Plan for electricity, the country is planning to add some 17000 MW of renewables to the coal-heavy power mix by 2030. The Department of Energy is currently procuring 3725 MW of renewable energy and aims at introducing the same to grid between 2014 and 2016.