Most people in India are acquainted with the applications of solar energy and how it would fuel the economy to propel further. With the rapid decrease in the demand for the conventional source of energy and their increasing affects on the climate, finding out methods to harness and increase the production of these non-conventional sources has never really been this imperative. So, how can India harness solar energy, and emerge as the prominent player in this race?
What is India’s current potential in terms of harnessing and generating solar energy?
Solar power, the most abundant of all the renewable sources of energy, is vital to bring forth the clean energy to the front. It’s the second wave in India’s renewable energy push, and India doesn’t wish to be outmatched this time. India hopes to build a solar power capacity of 100 GW by 2022, as compared to India’s total peak electricity demand of 164 GW in 2017-18, and 235 GW by 2021-22. As Asia’s second-largest and world’s sixth largest economy, India’s share in the global energy demand will take a dominant chunk, and is expected to rise at 9% CAGR by 2035.
India shows no signs of slowing down for its future endeavors and skites on having the world’s fifth largest capacity for generating power. As of March 2017, the total installed solar power capacity in India stands atop at 20 GW, which is increasing at an exponential rate. India has also broadened its horizon over to other energy sources as well which are doing their part to meet India’s total energy needs.
As the growing economy propels the demand further, India will witness a new revolution in the conversion of solar energy, adding at least 10 times more value than any other energy source.
How far has India reached?
The immense upscaling of the solar power generation capacity target of 100 GW by 2022 will most likely act as a catalyst in the manufacturing of photovoltaic cells, equipment, panels, and to supply a number of solar-related services.
The past few years have witnessed a significant amount of efforts being made by the government of India to transmute India into a dominating solar power force.
- There has been an increase of 243% in solar power capacity addition in the past few years; thanks to the efforts made by the government.
- The second largest solar power plant, with a capacity of generating 648 MW of energy, and comprises of 2.5 million separate solar modules was unveiled in Tamil Nadu in 2016.
- In 2015-16, India saw a capacity of 3,019 MW, which is the highest ever.
- 50 solar parks were authorized for 21 states in the country, with an aggregate capacity of 40,000 MW.
- Around 31,472 solar pumps were installed in 2015-16, which is much higher than the pumps installed in 1991.
Increasing crude oil prices and demand to shift towards a cleaner future has prompted the government to intensify the production of solar energy in India.
What are the goals?
India is swinging off the fences and Prime Minister Narendra Modi has set an ambitious target, which aims to increase the renwable energy production capacity to 175 GW by the end of 2022. Around 100 GW is expected to be born out of photovoltaic cells by 2022, and the rest with other renewable sources of energy
. A number of international and national banks have also joined hands, to help finance the solar projects to achieve the grand vision. As a long-term vision, India aims to become the solar dominant country and reduce its dependence on the burning of fossil fuels to produce energy.
What are the challenges?
- Land scarcity in many regions of India
- The cost of installing the solar panels would be initially a little costly
- The lack of cooperation between government and industry for the technology to employ
- An extensive amount of R&D is required
Solar power, once a niche source of energy, is paving its path in becoming the cheapest and the most reliable source of energy. Though taming the sun requires much more than hopes, India is swiftly picking up the pace in harnessing the full potential of solar energy.