The Future of Solar Energy in India

  • Earlier thought of as an expensive source of energy, solar power is fast becoming a much cheaper option to the conventional types of non-sustainable energy.
  • India is working with the target of producing 100 GW of solar power by 2022, which appears to be feasible given the current developments in this arena and the volume of foreign investments flowing in this direction.
  • A number of favorable conditions in India suggest the country can become a global leader in renewable energy sooner than it is expected.

There are sure positive signs around us that indicate a quicker transition from conventional energy sources to renewable energy, especially like solar energy. Over recent years, the growth of solar energy production in developing countries like India has been remarkable. In terms of the extent of its solar power generation infrastructure installations, India has already overtaken the US and become the second-largest solar power market in the world.

Estimates show the nation is presently producing about 25 GW of solar power. Among the new energy capacity additions achieved in the country, solar power alone makes up about 53%. The energy production from large scale solar installations constitutes 87 percent of the solar capacity while the roof-top installations are fast picking up.

Photo by ArtHouse Studio

India along with the other developing nations in Southeast Asia is fervently developing in the lines of producing renewable energy. Over the coming years, we might see exponential growth in these lines.

What fuels the drive to shift to solar energy

India’s population is increasing and also the industrialization and economic development. Hence the demand for energy in the country is very soon expected to outpace its production. Coal is becoming a scarce material to find and domestic gas sources are fast depleting. Thinking of sustainability, we must invest in renewable energy like solar power that is bound to become the most crucial segment of the country’s energy portfolio. India is today seen as a principal hub for solar energy production due to its upcoming several billion-dollar solar power firms.

The cost of solar power has dramatically lowered in India during recent years. The favorable government policies welcoming FDI and the highly promising solar power market in the country have beckoned a good deal of foreign investments in this sector. The solar Philippines alone is looking forward to jumping into the solar industry in India aiming to install about 500 MW solar farms in the nation. Commenting on the opportunities in the solar power domain in India, Leandro Leviste, Founder & President, Solar Philippines, remarked, “We’re prioritizing countries where there is a competitive selection process for power suppliers because we believe that that is where we’re most competitive. The wonderful thing about India is perhaps [it’s] the most open market in the world. You don’t need local partners, you don’t need any local connections.”

The present government in India is highly keen on augmenting its solar power production capabilities. The ongoing efforts in the nation are signaling the international entrepreneurs to partner with the solar power franchise in India. The union government has also adopted a number of favorable policies that intend to boost up the solar power generation capabilities of the country. Some of the attractions available for the international investors to jump into this segment include capital subsidy, accelerated depreciation, renewable energy certificates, assured power purchase agreement, and net metering incentives besides several others.

Given the factors listed above, the environment in India now is more favorable for solar energy initiatives than ever in the past.

Why solar power has a bright future in India

The second-largest in the world, the solar power industry in India is receiving a strong impetus from the government to grow at a rapid phase. India is moving towards its target of producing over 100 GW of solar electricity by 2022. With some of the world’s top solar power energy companies involved in the mission in India, the low operating costs, and the reducing costs of solar panels in the nation are pushing the growth forward.

India’s strategic geographic location

The highly advantageous geographic location of India highly supports the solar industry. India receives an abundance of sunlight throughout the year and on an average, India has more than 300 sunny days and 3,000 hours of sunshine in a year. Some of the states of India are strategically located that they are endowed with one of the highest renewable energy capacity and are able to produce huge amounts of solar power even on cloudy days.

Proliferating solar projects in the nation

The states of India like Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan, and Andhra Pradesh enjoy a huge potential to invest profitably in solar energy. Gujarat is housing one of the huge solar power projects in the world today thanks to the immense efforts spared by the union government.

Cheaper cost

Looking at the present technology, it is true that solar systems and solar panels are a bit expensive to install. Nevertheless, once the whole system is set up, the investment turns to be a profitable option in the long run in a way reducing the cost of energy bills and increasing the saving for the consumers. The high ROI is definitely a huge incentive that attracts a large number of consumers to turn to solar power.

Employment opportunities

There is no alternative to switching to solar energy as it is the most viable and the easiest of the available alternative energy options and renewable energy is the only promising future for the world. The increasing number of solar energy companies in India can help solve the problem of unemployment in the nation to a large extent by creating more job opportunities.

Towards a promising future

Thanks to the government’s tireless efforts, solar power initiatives in India are beginning to share the fast-growing energy supply burden of the country. The costs of PV modules are falling. The new policies put in place, the highly favorable investment atmosphere in the solar energy segment, the overwhelming participation in the solar energy production through FDI, the immense market potential for solar energy in India, and the most favorable environment for cost-effective production of solar power are some of the major factors that are driving the rapid growth of solar energy capabilities of the country and assuring a highly promising future for solar power in India.

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