PM Narendra Modi declared Gujrat's Modhera village in Mehsana district as India's first 24x7 solar powered village. PM Modi said, "Modhera was known for Sun temple; now it will also be known as solar-powered village."
Modhera is the country's first round-the-clock solar-powered village involved developing a ground-mounted solar power plant. This village has more than 1,300 rooftop solar systems on residential and government buildings all integrated with Battery Energy storage system (BESS).
- Prime Minister declares village Modhera as India's first 24x7 solar powered village.
- This solar project, which is first of its kind, realises the Prime Minister's vision of solarization of the sun-temple town of Modhera.
- The project demonstrates how India's renewable energy process can empower people at grassroots level.
Rooftop Solar Power System in the Country
Ministry of New and Renewable Energy is implementing Rooftop Solar Programme Phase II to promote rooftop solar (RTS) in the country including in rural areas.
Financial Assistance for Solar Power System
- For individual households: Central Financial Assistance (CFA) up to 40% of the benchmark cost is provided for the first 3 kW capacity of RTS plants and up to 20% of the benchmark cost for capacity beyond 3 kW and up to 10 kW.
- For Group Housing Societies/Residential Welfare Associations (GHS/RWA): CFA is up to 20% of the benchmark cost for RTS plants of capacity up to 500 kW used for supply of power to common facilities.
- Target: Total 4000 MW capacity is targeted in the residential sector under the Programme by 2022 against which around 1385 MW have been installed in approximately 3.38 lakh households.
Issues During Implementation of Rooftop Solar Programme
The progress in Phase-II was significantly affected due to:
- Delay in tendering process by DISCOMs
- Less number of empanelled vendors
- Vendors complaining delay in release of subsidy by DISCOMs
- DISCOMs taking long time to upload reports and other documentations for release of subsidy from Ministry, etc.
- Solution of these Rooftop Solar Programme Problems
To address these problems, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has issued procedure for simplification of Rooftop Solar Programme.
- National Portal: Under simplified procedure, interested residential consumers from any part of the country can apply on a National Portal for rooftop solar without waiting for DISCOM to finalise tender.
- Choice of Vendor: The consumer will have the choice to select any vendor registered with DISCOMs and choose quality and efficiency of solar equipment.
- Rate Decision: The rate of rooftop solar plant will be decided mutually by vendor and the consumer.
- Subsidy: The subsidy is fixed and same for the entire country.
- Limited DISCOM Role: DISCOMs role will be limited to issuing technical feasibility approval, installation of net-meter and inspection of the system.
- Direct Transfer of Subsidy: After installation and inspection of the system, subsidy will be released directly in the bank account of the consumer.
- Online Progress Tracking: All the process starting from registration of application till the release of subsidy can be tracked online in the portal.
- Easy Consumer Registration: The vendor registration process has also been made simple.
Power Generated Through Solar Energy in India
Central Electricity Authority (CEA) has reported that the power generated through solar energy in the country during the last five years has been as under (in mu):
- 2017-18: 25871.07
- 2018-19: 39268.19
- 2019-20: 50131.09
- 2020-21: 60402.26
- 2021-22: 73483.94
- Solar -48.55 GW
- Wind-40.03 GW
- Small hydro-4.83 GW
- Large hydro-46.51 GW
- Biopower-10.62 GW
- Nuclear-6.78 GW
Renewable Energy in India
Today, India is the world's third largest producer of renewable energy, with 40% of its installed electricity capacity coming from non-fossil fuel sources.
Installed Capacity of Renewable Sources of Energy in India
Towards Renewable Energy
- Hydropower: India has always been committed to looking for more alternative energy sources for sustainable development. Over the years, many policy and initiatives have promoted hydropower development and facilitated investments. Today, India is 5th in the world regarding usable hydropower potential.
- Nuclear Energy: Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) was founded in the 1950s to secure the country's long-term energy independence. Today, India is the only developing nation with indigenously developed, demonstrated and deployed nuclear reactors for electricity generation.
- Wind Energy: Work on wind energy started in India during the 1960s when the National Aeronautical Laboratory (NAL) developed windmills, primarily for supplying irrigation water. Today, India is the 4th largest wind power capacity in the world, blessed with a constant movement of wind, especially in the Southern, Western and North Western regions.
- Solar Energy: India has spearheaded the International Solar Alliance (ISA) which is an action-oriented, member-driven, collaborative platform for increased deployment of solar energy technologies. Today, India achieved 5th global position in solar power deployment.
India's Vision Towards Net Zero Emissions
The country's vision is to achieve Net Zero Emissions by 2070, in addition to attaining the short-term targets which include:
- Increasing renewables capacity to 500 GW by 2030.
- Meeting 50% of energy requirements from renewables.
- Reducing cumulative emissions by one billion tonnes by 2030.
- Reducing emissions intensity of India's gross domestic product (GDP) by 45% by 2030.
- India has vast solar energy potential. About 5,000 trillion kWh per year energy is incident over India's land area with most parts receiving 4-7 kWh per sq. m per day.
- National Institute of Solar Energy has assessed the Country's solar potential of about 748 GW assuming 3% of the waste land area to be covered by Solar PV modules.
- In order to achieve the above target, Government of India have launched various schemes to encourage generation of solar power in the country: Solar Park Scheme, Bundling Scheme, CPSU Scheme, Defence Scheme, VGF Schemes, Canal bank & Canal top Scheme, Grid Connected Solar Rooftop Scheme etc.
India's Solar Energy Target
Recently, India achieved 5th global position in solar power deployment by surpassing Italy. Solar power capacity has increased by more than 11 times in the last five years from 2.6 GW in March,2014 to 30 GW in July, 2019.