Indian authorities will invite competitive bids for close to 22.5 GW of new tenders for solar power projects by December end while about 43 GW of capacity is at different stages of commissioning by successful bidders.
Bids to enhance solar and wind power installations will continue to grow as India has committed to the world to enhance its dependence on renewable power, a top executive with a renewable energy company said. Speaking at the G-20 summit, on Saturday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, "We will meet our goal of 175 GW of renewable energy well before the target of 2022. Now, we are taking a big step ahead by seeking to achieve 450 GW by 2030."
Modi government is confident of achieving these targets of probably the world′s largest renewable energy programme in history.
Currently, India′s solar power capacity stands at about 35 GW and the government is planning to increase it to 100 GW in the next couple of years to meet its ambitious targets under National Solar Mission. Also, India has 9.5 GW of wind power capacity under execution and new bids are expected in near future. Of the country′s 370 GW of total electricity generation capacity, renewable power accounts for close to 24 per cent that is expected to grow year-on-year.
The Solar Energy Corporation India (SECI) is the is the nodal agency to facilitate the implementation of the Mission and managing 16.2 GW of tenders. SECI has invited 7.5 GW of the tender to commission solar projects in Jammu & Kashmir, 2.5 GW in Karnataka and 6.2 GW anywhere the developers want in India.
The SECI will sign power purchase agreements (PPA) with the lowest bidders after tying up with state-owned distribution companies (discoms) to supply renewable power. Since early 2019, SECI has introduced a mechanism to sign PPAs with successful developers after tying up with the discoms. Such future planning enables SECI to strike balance between the interests of renewable power project developers and discoms while assuring adequate generation capacity in pipeline for the future.
Besides SECI, public sector utilities and Indian Railways too are planning to float tenders for sizable solar power capacity to enhance the share of renewable energy in their portfolio.
Since 2019, SECI has introduced a new mechanism to strike balance between interests of developers and discoms.
"I have formed the International Solar Alliance, which has 80-85 member countries. They have become a part of the movement in the entire world. Since it was done with clean heart conviction, the result is that India is making giant strides as far as solar power is concerned. Today, the price per unit has gone down to less than Rs 2 from Rs. 12-13," said PM Modi on Saturday morning while addressing 8th Convocation Ceremony of Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University, at Gandhinagar, through video conference.