Solar Project Development in India_ A Long Road Towards an Ambitious Target

India’s cumulative installations breached the 40 GW mark, according to Mercom India Research. The total installations comprised 34.9 MW of utility-scale solar installations, and the rooftop segment accounted for 5.1 GW of installations.

While the numbers are still a far cry from the target of 100 GW by 2020, things seem to be moving in the right direction after the Covid-19 pandemic led to a slowdown in 2020. Before the pandemic, solar installations stood at 37 GW.

The forecast looks positive for the current year and 2022, but there are many hurdles to develop solar projects. Some of the factors that are slowing the speed of project implementation in the country are land acquisition, transmission infrastructure availability, force majeure events, labor shortage, and disputes.

Mercom is hosting a virtual conference, “Mercom India Solar Summit,” which will address the ground realities and market outlook amid the rapidly changing solar space and the energy transition taking place in the country. The virtual event will be held on April 8 and 9, 2021.

The event will bring together industry leaders and stakeholders who will share their views and ideas and discuss the changing landscape of the Indian solar industry. The event has nine sessions spread across two days.

The session titled ‘Solar Project Development-Work in Progress and the Path Ahead‘ will exclusively deal with the project development and the ground realities. You can register here for the conference.

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The panel, comprising representatives from developers and government regulators, will address issues like the price volatility of components, challenges in design and balance of system (BoS), and the global pressure on local markets and prices.

The panelists will include Aniruddha Kumar, Additional Secretary at the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), Ashok Pal, Deputy General Manager, Power Grid, Sandeep Kashyap, President of ACME, and Rohit Bhandari, Head – Business Development (North & East) at Sterling and Wilson.

The pandemic led to delays in the commissioning of projects, with many ongoing projects pushed to this year and 2022.

In February this year, the MNRE issued a notification denying requests for another five-month extension to commission renewable energy projects, stating that these extensions would not be granted routinely in the future.

It had earlier issued directions to treat the lockdown as a force majeure event and instructed all renewable project implementing agencies to give renewable projects under development a five-month commissioning date extension.