10 October 2015 11:56:51 IST

Solar installations set to quadruple in two years

Centre expects to add 10,859 MW capacity in 2016-17

Solar installations in India are set to double this year and double again next year. According to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), the nation today has an installed solar capacity of 4,262 MW. The Ministry expects 4,345 MW of fresh capacity to come up in 2015-16, of which 518 MW has already been built in the current fiscal.

Further, going by the bids on the anvil, the Centre expects India to add 10,859 MW in 2016-17 alone. The numbers add up to close to 19,000 MW by March 2017, against the previous target of 20,000 MW by 2022. The MNRE put out its estimates soon after Prime Minister Narendra Modi reviewed the progress of solar across the country on September 30. (The Prime Minister interacts directly with the Union Secretaries and the Chief Secretaries of various States over video on the last Wednesday of each month, under the Pragati initiative. Solar was high on the agenda of the Sept 30 discussion.)

Tamil Nadu leads The numbers place Tamil Nadu at the top of the list for 2015-17. The State is expected to see fresh solar power additions of 1,214 MW, closely followed by Telangana with 1,166 MW, Madhya Pradesh (432 MW) and Andhra Pradesh (350 MW). The leaders of today have little to show — Rajasthan has 50 MW against its name, while Gujarat doesn’t feature in the list at all.

While some in the industry — none was willing to be named — were doubtful of the numbers, the figures seem to be in agreement with the projections made by Citigroup in its recent report, titled ‘Energy Darwinism II’. The report projected India to have solar installations of 26,523 MW by 2020.