How India Became a Frontrunner in the global renewable energy market
India has made significant progress in the renewable energy sector, establishing itself as a market leader in the global renewable energy market. India has seen remarkable growth in renewable energy capacity as a result of central government policies and initiatives, technological advancements, and significant foreign investment.
According to the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) most recent report, India’s installed renewable energy capacity will reach 174 GW by 2023, accounting for approximately 37% of the country’s total energy supply. According to the report, India has exceeded its target of installing 175 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2022, with a capacity of 280 GW projected by 2025.
The government has taken the lead in encouraging the use of renewable energy sources. Launched in 2010, the flagship National Solar Mission aimed to install 100 GW of solar power by 2022, which was later increased to 450 GW by 2030. The Centre has also launched a wind energy program with the goal of reaching 60 GW of capacity by 2022. These lofty goals have been critical in promoting renewable energy adoption in the country.
The renewable energy sector in India has also attracted significant foreign investment, with companies from all over the world investing in solar and wind power projects. According to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, foreign direct investment (FDI) in India’s renewable energy sector totaled $251 million (Rs 20.5 billion) in the third quarter (Q3) of the fiscal year (FY) 2023, with Singapore, Mauritius, the Netherlands, and Japan leading the way.
The falling cost of solar and wind energy has been a major driving force behind India’s renewable energy growth. According to the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA), the cost of solar power in India has dropped by 84% since 2010, making it cheaper than coal-powered power in most parts of the country. Similarly, the cost of wind power has dropped by 49% in the last decade, making it one of India’s most cost-effective energy sources.
India’s success in renewable energy can also be attributed to the sector’s rapid technological advancements. The country is a pioneer in floating solar technology, with Kerala housing the world’s largest floating solar power plant. The plant will generate 7.5 lakh units of electricity per year and has a capacity of 500 kilowatts.
The world’s largest solar park, the Pavagada Solar Park in Karnataka, has a capacity of 2 GW and is located in India. The park has attracted significant investment from companies such as Softbank, Canadian Solar, and Adani Green Energy.
Despite these achievements, India’s renewable energy sector continues to face challenges. Due to a lack of grid infrastructure and limited storage capacity, the country’s power distribution companies, or DISCOMs, have struggled to integrate renewable energy into the grid. As a result, renewable energy output has been reduced, with power generated by wind and solar projects being wasted due to a lack of demand or transmission infrastructure.
To address these issues, the government has launched a number of initiatives to improve grid infrastructure and storage capacity. The Green Energy Corridor project, which began in 2013, aims to improve renewable energy transmission infrastructure and increase the capacity of grid-connected renewable energy.
In addition, the government has launched the National Energy Storage Mission, with the goal of installing 40 GW of storage capacity by 2025.
The government is also encouraging the use of cutting-edge technologies such as demand response, which adjusts power consumption based on grid requirements. This can help address the issue of renewable energy curtailment while also increasing grid efficiency.
India’s success in renewable energy has also benefited the country’s environment. Reduced coal-based power generation has resulted in significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, improving air quality and mitigating the effects of climate change.
The country has received international recognition and accolades for its leadership in the renewable energy market. In 2022, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) recognized India as the Innovator of the Year for its efforts to promote renewable energy adoption.
India’s success in renewable energy has also inspired other countries to follow suit. The country’s experience has been shared with other developing countries through international forums such as the International Solar Alliance and the United Nations Conference on Climate Change.
Finally, thanks to a combination of government policies and initiatives, technological advancements, and foreign investments, India has emerged as a leader in the global renewable energy market. With 174 GW of installed renewable energy capacity and growing, India has exceeded its targets and is on track to achieve even greater success in the coming years.
Government initiatives are addressing the sector’s challenges, such as grid integration and storage capacity, and the country’s success has inspired other countries to follow suit. As India makes progress in the renewable energy sector, it will be a key player in the global transition to a sustainable energy future.
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Content Credit:THE ECONOMIC TIMES