Renewable Energy Current Affairs - 2019
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According to recently released report by Mercom Communications, India emerged as third largest solar market in world in 2017 behind China and United States. Mercom Communications India is arm of global clean energy consulting firm Mercom Capital Group.
Key Highlights of report
India has set new record with 9.6 GW of solar installations in 2017, which was more than double the 4.3 GW installed in 2016. In 2017, India’s solar market had grown at Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of approximately 170% since 2010. The robust growth boosted India’s total solar installed capacity to 19.6 GW as of December 2017. As of 2017-end, large-scale solar project development accounted for 92% of the all-time cumulative solar installations in India with 19.6 GW and 2017 alone made up 90% of such installations with 8.6 GW. Of the total 1.6 GW cumulative solar rooftop installations in India by 2017, 995 MW was installed last year.
Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has issued National Wind-Solar Hybrid Policy with an aim to boost renewable power generation by promoting new projects as well as hybridisation of existing ones. Government is also going to launch scheme for new hybrid projects under this policy.
Features of the Policy
Objectives of policy: Provide comprehensive framework for promotion of large grid connected wind-solar Photo Voltaic (PV) hybrid system for efficient utilization of transmission infrastructure and land. Reduce variability in renewable power generation and achieving better grid stability. Encourage new technologies, methods and way-outs involving combined operation of wind and solar PV plants.
Flexibility in share of wind and solar components: It has been provided in hybrid project, subject to condition that, rated power capacity of one resource be at least 25% of rated power capacity of other resource for it to be recognised hybrid project.
Technology front: Policy provides for integration of both energy sources i.e. wind and solar at alternating current (AC) as well as direct current (DC) level.
Hybrid projects: The policy seeks to promote new hybrid projects as well as hybridisation of existing wind and solar projects. It allows hybridisation of existing projects (wind or solar) with higher transmission capacity than sanctioned one, subject to availability of margin in existing transmission capacity.
Procurement of power: It will be on tariff based transparent bidding process for which Government entities may invite bids.
Use of battery storage: The policy permits use of battery storage in hybrid project for optimising output and reduce variability.
Standards and regulations: It mandates the regulatory authorities to formulate necessary standards and regulations for wind-solar hybrid systems.
The Union government has set ambitious target of achieving 175 GigaWatt (GW) of installed capacity from renewable energy sources by 2022, which includes 100 GW of solar and 60 GW of wind power capacity. The total renewable power installed capacity in the country stood at about 70 GW in financial year 2017-18. There have been significant capacity additions in renewables in recent years and hybrid energy will further help in better utilisation of resources.