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Hey, capacity crosses 50,000 MW

India continues to make progress on the energy front with record capacity addition made through renewable energy.

Hey, capacity crosses 50,000 MW

Is a landmark achievement, the cumulative renewable energy capacity in India crossing 50,000 MW during December 2016. As of December 31, 2016, the total grid-connected clean power capacity stood at 50,019 MW. Of that wind power segment was 57 per cent of the capacity at 28,700 MW.

However, solar is the fast-growing segment and now occupies the second position with a total installed capacity of 9013 MW. Bio Power segment contributed 7857 MW, while Small hydro sector brought 4334 MW.

For the current fiscal, Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has set a capacity addition target of 16,660 MW,  the highest-ever capacity target fixed for a year. 

The first three quarters have brought only about 26 per cent of the targeted capacity. During April-December 2016 period, renewable sector added total new capacity of 4341 MW. Of this, solar accounted for 2150 MW of capacity, followed by wind at 1923 MW, bio power at 101 MW, small hydro at 60 MW and waste-to-power 7.5 MW.  But, industry analysts express hope that Q4 would see huge capacity addition.

 “Share of solar generation continues to grow with 16.7 per cent of new power generating capacity, added in 2016 (as of November 2016). Cumulative solar capacity including large-scale and rooftop projects in the country reached 9.6 GW,” according to Raj Prabhu, CEO and co-founder of Mercom Capital Group.

 “We start the year 2017 with a pipeline of around 14 GW of utility scale projects, out of which 7.7 GW is expected to be commissioned in the year (growth of around 90 per cent over 2016), says Bridge to India.

Ranked the third...

“Combined with 1.1 GW of expected rooftop solar capacity, India should add a total of 8.8 GW in 2017, ranking it amongst the top three global markets after China and the USA,” it added. Solar tariffs are expected to fall below the critical Rs.4.00 ($ 0.06)/ kWh mark making solar power the cheapest new source of power. At the same time, improving financial health of power distribution companies due to UDAY implementation will also help in sustaining renewable energy demand in particular.

Rooftop solar is also expected to sustain its growth trajectory in 2017. 

The top 10 states – Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh – account for about 90 per cent of all solar installations and those in the pipeline.

While green energy sector is bullish on capacity addition outlook, the conventional power segment is also making good progress.

Record additions in the 12th plan...

During the 12th Plan period (2012-17), total capacity addition of about 88,928 MW (against the target of 88,537 MW) from conventional sources have been achieved as of 31 October, 2016. With such capacity addition, the electricity energy shortage in the country has reduced to 0.7 per cent during this fiscal (up to October, 2016) from 8.7 per cent in 2012-13.

Power Generation during 2016-17 (April-November, 2016) is 777.506 BU, showing a growth rate of about 5 per cent over the same period in previous year. Coal based power generation during the current year is 595.124 BU, showing a growth rate of about six per cent over the same period in the previous year.

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu recently joined the UDAY scheme, meant for DISCOM restructuring, becoming the 21st state to join the programme. Tamil Nadu is expected to derive an overall net benefit of about Rs.11,000 crore through UDAY, by way of savings in interest cost, reduction in AT&C and transmission losses, interventions in energy efficiency, coal reforms, etc.

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