India: Neyveli Lignite to develop 600 MW of PV plants

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Neyveli Lignite, a public sector lignite mining and power generation utility, has plans in the pipelines to develop solar parks throughout India totaling 600 MW.

The company has been thus far using lignite as the fuel of choice for its power units. The current plan sees the need to increase the company’s total power generation capacity to 12,221 MW, up from the current 2,740 MW, according to local Indian press.

Neyveli Lignite has held talks with the government in Tamil Nadu, as well as in other states on its PV development plans. The company is currently setting up smaller solar projects totaling 50 MW in the 10 to 15 MW range, each in Tamil Nadu and Rajasthan.

Chairman and managing director of Neyveli Lignite Surender Mohan stated, "In addition to these solar projects, we propose to install a 100 MW solar project at Neyveli, for which identification of suitable land is under progress." There is already one 10 MW PV project in Neyveli, located in the north east of the Tamil Nadu state, that is expected to be commissioned soon.

The remaining capacity goal that will not be covered by solar PV will come from wind and coal. Neyveli Lignite already has a 51 MW wind power pipeline to be developed mainly in the Tirunelveli district in Tamil Nadu.