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Ultra-mega solar parks initiated India’s clean energy transition: US-based IEEFA report

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Ultra-mega solar parks kick-start Indias clean energy transitionIn accordance with a report “India’s Utility-Scale Solar Parks—A Global Success Story” by Kashish Shah, a researcher analyst at US-based Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA), the installation of utility-scale solar parks or ultra-mega power plant (UMPP)in India has started the India’s energy sector transition. This approach has attracted global investment.

  • It should be noted that in 2016, the Indian government has set a target of installing 175 gigawatts of renewable energy by the FY2021-22and 275 gigawatts by FY2026-27to transform the country’s power sector from an expensive, unreliable, and polluting fossil fuel‑based system into a low-cost, reliable and low-emission system based on renewable energy.

Efforts by India to transform its power sector

As of now, India houses multiple ultra-mega solar parks with capacities of more than 1GW, and two of them are the largest commissioned solar installations in the world.

  • The Bhadla Solar Park in Rajasthan is the world’s largest such installation to date, covering more than 14,000 acres with a total capacity of 2,245 megawatts (MW) whilePavagada Solar Park in Karnataka with a total capacity of 1400 MW.
  • Bhadla project has attracted record low solar tariffs in the range of Rs 2.44-Rs 2.62 kilowatt-hour, which remain among the lowest tariffs in the country till date.
  • Apart from above, under-construction Ananthapuramu Solar Park in Andhra Pradesh will be the largest solar power facility to be built from domestically manufactured solar cells and modules.

What is an ultra-mega power plant (UMPP)?

The UMPP concept involves a state government or local distribution company providing a single central grid connection and acquiring land on which the project can be built, shielding developers from procurement and time-delay risks.

About IEEFA:
It conducts research and analyses on financial and economic issues related to energy and the environment.
Headquarters– Cleveland, Ohio, United States (US).