Share of Solar Rises to 7.46% of India’s Total Installed Power Capacity

Renewable energy capacity additions continue to increase in India, accounting for approximately 21.41 percent of India’s capacity mix at the end of September 2018. This is an 0.48 percent increase in the installed capacity of renewable energy generating sources when compared to June 30, 2018, when renewable energy sources accounted for 20.93 percent of total installed power capacity.

According to Mercom’s India Solar Project Tracker, between July 1, 2018, and September 30, 2018, Indian solar installations totaled 1.5 GW (preliminary numbers). Cumulative solar installations reached 26 GW at the end of September 2018, representing 7.46 percent of India’s total installed power capacity compared to June 30, 2018 when solar accounted for 7.03 percent of total installed power capacity.

India - Cumulative Installed Power Capacity Mix

At the end of September 2018, the country’s total installed capacity was 348,737.97 MW with renewables accounting for 74,667.96 MW, making up 21.41 percent. This was a 1,927 MW increase from June end 2018, which had cumulative renewable energy installations of 72,740.69 MW, representing 20.93 percent India’s total installed capacity. Solar installations grew from ~24 GW as of June 2018 to 26 GW as of September 2018.

Wind currently accounts for 34,615.10 MW of total installed capacity and 9.93 percent of India’s overall power capacity. This is a 0.06 percent increase in installed capacity quarter-over-quarter. To date, there are over 7 GW of wind projects that have been successfully auctioned.

Hydro power comprises approximately 13.04 percent of India’s 2018 totaled installed renewable capacity, standing at 45,487.42 MW. It accounted for 13.06 percent of installed capacity in June 2018. Hydro’s percentage share has slightly declined as the installation rates of solar and other renewables have spiked.

Small hydro (hydro projects up to 25 MW station capacities) accounted for 1.29 percent of total installed capacity at the end of September 2018, with an installed capacity of 4,506.95 MW. The percentage share of small hydro in the energy mix has maintained its status quo when compared to June 2018. However, the installed capacity has gone up by a few MW.

Nuclear power has a total capacity of 6,780 MW, making up 1.94 percent of the country’s total capacity at the end of September 2018. And like hydro, its percentage share has also witnessed a dip as capacity additions from other sources have increased. This has led to a decrease in percentage share of nuclear power by 0.01 percent, from 1.95 percent in June end 2018.

Despite the increase in renewable capacity additions, coal continues to dominate and accounts for 56.23 percent of India’s total installed power capacity. However, in a quarter over quarter comparison, share of coal capacity declined by 0.43 percent, when compared to coal accounting for 56.66 percent in June end 2018.

Installation trends clearly show India’s move towards renewable energy.  Coal remains the major source of the country’s power production but the share in India’s total installed power capacity has been consistently decreasing paving way for renewables.

Saumy Prateek Saumy is a senior staff reporter with MercomIndia.com covering business and energy news since 2016. Prior to Mercom, Saumy was a copy editor at Thomson Reuters. Saumy earned his Bachelors Degree in Journalism & Mass Communication from the Manipal Institute of Communication at Manipal University. More articles from Saumy Prateek.