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India Makes Incredible Strides in New Renewables Capacity

20 Dec 10:00 by Steve Walia

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Thanks to a concerted nationwide push on clean energy investment, India's Renewable Energy Programme has added an additional 14,300MW of capacity to its new total of 46.33GW overall. Even more impressively, it has achieved this in less than three years.

The country is now in fourth place in the world for its total installed capacity for wind power. It now has an extra 14GW under Grid Connected Renewable power, which captures 7GW of wind, 5.8GW of solar and just under 1pc on bio-power.

Now green energy has a total energy share in India of c. 15pc. Solar power is also looking particularly notable. As of the end of October, India had installed 8727MW of fresh solar capacity.

It is now forging ahead with the biggest capacity extension programme for renewables in the world. The Indian government wants to see a huge drive in renewables in order to grow the proportion of clean energy being produced and used in the country. Key drivers encouraging this step include shortages of electricity across India, the issue of energy security and access and broader concerns over climate change.

The next target is to have a total renewable energy capacity of 175GW installed by 2022, and the main programmes being progressed are a new solar defence scheme, solar park and a drive for solar rooftop schemes and solar pumps. The government will also be seeking to install solar power plants on canal tops and sides.

Demand for energy is also growing fast in India, thanks to rising prosperity and economic growth and a shift towards greater urbanisation. This makes the government's policies on energy investment more critical than ever and offers an opportunity to scale up to meet demand with green options rather than damaging fossil fuels.