Moving fast: India’s rapid rise in energy demand is clearly impressive, with BP suggesting it will overtake even China by 2040 | Image credit: EarthTechling

Renewables will be world’s main source of power by 2040

BP’s latest annual Energy Outlook report says renewable energy sources will be the world’s main source of power within the next 20 years. The oil giant says that wind, solar and other renewables could account for about 30% of the world’s electricity supplies by 2040 – up from 25% in BP’s 2040 estimates last year – and about 10% today.

BP also expects China’s energy growth to fall sharply as its economic expansion slows. The report notes that in the next 10 years, India will overtake China in energy demand growth, although China may remain the largest energy consumer in 2040.

India’s power generation needs more flexibility: ETC
At the 2019 World Sustainable Development Summit, the Energy Transition Commission (ETC) along with TERI and Climate Policy Institute released their analysis on India’s Renewable Energy (RE) transition. The study looks at reforms needed in power generation, which will allow for a flexible electricity system that is able to include the variability of wind and solar, and seek supply from existing power sources.

The CPI report stated India could integrate 390GW of wind and solar energy generation by 2030 at a cost that  is lower than the current trajectory. The report looks at technologies available that could help existing as well as planned power systems to increase and decrease power generation based on demand.

The study further highlighted that the cost of solar and wind in India is expected to decline to 1.9 – 2.3/KWh and 2.3 – 2.6/KWh respectively. According to the analysis, India could achieve 45% of power generation from non-fossil sources by 2030, which exceeds India’s Paris climate commitments by 5%.

SoftBank wins big chunk in India’s wind power pie

Japan’s SoftBank won the biggest chunk (325 MW) of Solar Energy Corporation of India’s (SECI) 1,200 MW wind project, followed by Adani and ReNew-owned Ostro Energy (250 MW and 300 MW respectively). Softbank-led SB Energy quoted a tariff of Rs2.83 per unit. Adani and Astro were the lowest bidders for the tender quoting Rs2.82 per unit. The entry of SoftBank is encouraging for the flailing Indian wind power sector, which is currently going through a slowdown over issues of infrastructure and availability of land.

Andhra Pradesh sets new solar target: 5,000 MW by 2023

The Andhra Pradesh government’s new renewable policy has a target of setting up 5,000 MW of solar capacity by 2023, with several incentives to industry, reported the Economic Times. Under the new norms, power distribution companies (discoms) would procure 2,000 MW of solar power in the next five years. Andhra Pradesh will also offer incentives to private solar companies for 10 years, according to the report. The state government will also help firms acquire land to set up solar power projects, ensure water supply and get necessary clearances.

Report: India to add 11.4GW solar capacity annually for the next few years

S&P Global Platts has released a new report that says India is slated to add 11.4 gigawatt (GW) of solar capacity annually in the next few years. The report has also highlighted land acquisition, financial health of DISCOMS and grid availability as key risks to a smooth solar deployment in the next decade. However, the sector may slow down on the policy front as the 2019 general elections edge closer.

India to invest over Rs8,000 crore in assisting domestic solar players  

In a boost for India’s flailing domestic solar manufacturers, the government has given its nod to Rs8,580 crore for development of solar power projects under the second phase of the Central Public Sector Undertaking (CPSU) scheme. When completed, these projects will add 12 GW capacity to India’s power grid between the years 2019-20 and 2022-23.

This move is expected to give much-needed impetus to India’s domestic photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing sector, which is struggling to keep up with the Chinese solar industry juggernaut that is thriving thanks to an oversupply in its domestic market, allowing the country to sell solar panels abroad at a significantly cheaper rate.

Tamil Nadu’s wind power developers get stay on auction over low tariff ceiling

The battle between renewable energy developers and government agencies over ceiling tariffs heated up this month. The Indian wind energy manufacturers’ lobby – the Indian Wind Turbine Manufacturers Association (IWTMA) – got a temporary stay from the electricity tribunal on Tamil Nadu’s wind project auction over the issue of low tariff ceilings. Traditionally, governments have been adamant on imposing limits to keep the tariff low, much to the chagrin of developers.

This case is no different. Last year, Tamil Nadu’s power regulator, Tamil Nadu Electricity Regulatory Authority (TNERC) set a feed in tariff of Rs2.80 per unit. But Tamil Nadu’s main discom, the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Co (TANGEDCO) wanted to conduct a wind auction of 1500 MW at a ceiling price that was even lower, Rs2.65 per unit, forcing the IWTMA to petition the electricity tribunal.

China plans to put solar power station in space

China is taking its solar power ambition to even greater heights with plans to set up its first station in space. According to the Chinese media, the solar power station, which will orbit 36,000km above Earth, will be able to tap the energy of the sun’s rays at night as well, without interference from the changing seasons or the atmosphere. Scientists said the station would have guaranteed power supply 99% of the time, at six times the intensity of solar farms on Earth.

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