India Raises Renewable Energy Target Fourfold

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by ejazr, Jan 8, 2011.

  1. ejazr

    ejazr Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

    Oct 8, 2009
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    Hyderabad and Sydney

    MUMBAI -- India plans to quadruple its power generation capacity from renewable sources to 72,400 megawatts by 2022, its renewable energy ministry said late Tuesday.

    The South Asian nation's push to increase the amount of energy produced from renewable sources is linked to concerns over coal supplies, global climate change commitments and domestic moves towards clean energy.

    Developed countries are demanding stronger environmental commitments from major growing economies such as India and China, where energy demand is set to rise sharply to feed rapid industrialization and bring electricity to millions of rural households.

    India is projected to be the second-largest contributor to the increase in global energy demand by 2035, accounting for 18% of the rise, with its energy consumption more than doubling by 2035, according to recent data from the International Energy Agency.

    India, which has put in place a "National Action Plan on Climate Change", has said it will reduce its emissions intensity--the amount of carbon dioxide emitted per unit of gross domestic product--by 20%-25% of 2005 levels by 2020.

    It may also consider emissions cuts under an international mandate, softening an earlier stand, its environment minister said earlier in December.

    In order to meet these targets, India needs to curb emissions from the power sector, which accounts for about 60% of its total carbon dioxide emissions, according to government data. The power sector's dominant fuel source, and the most polluting, is coal.

    India's power generation capacity at the end of October was about 167 gigawatts, of which its renewables-based capacity was about 11% at 18,321 MW, the ministry of new and renewable energy said in a statement.

    It aims to raise renewables-based capacity to 72,400 MW--or 15.9% of total capacity--by 2022, when the country will have 455 GW of total capacity.

    Generation capacity under the renewables ministry covers renewable energy such as solar, wind and small hydroelectric plants, but not large hydroelectric projects.

    At the end of October about 65% of India's capacity was from fossil fuels, mostly coal. The government estimates domestic coal supplies will fall short of demand by 82.89 million metric tons in the financial year through March 2011, and widen in the following years, making it vital for it to look towards renewable energy.

    The ministry said it is pushing state distribution utilities to procure a specified minimum percentage of renewable power to boost generation from clean energy sources.

    The country has also launched a solar program targeting 20 GW of solar-based capacity by 2022 and introduced market instruments called renewable energy certificates. The planning commission has also put together a group of experts to prepare a strategy for a low-carbon economy.

    Analysts say India will have to work through numerous bureaucratic and procedural hurdles to meet its renewable energy targets and to match the sector's growth in other emerging markets.

    "In 2009 renewable investment in India was $2.3 billion, compared with $34.6 billion for China and $7.4 billion for Brazil," Fitch Ratings said in September in a note.
  3. Flint

    Flint Senior Member Senior Member

    Mar 10, 2009
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    This is good, but we need to show global leadership in alternative energy sources. The biggest threat to our country in the future is not going to be anything other than climate change.

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