Ather Energy, an Indian electric scooter maker, has signed a memorandum of understanding with the government of the Indian state of Tamil Nadu to open a new production facility for lithium-ion batteries and electric vehicles.
The government of Goa, now reeling under severe electricity shortages, has decided to extend its solar power purchase agreement with NTPC Vidyut Vyapar Nigam by three years, following a complete lack of interest in the Indian state’s recent solar tenders.
State energy minister Nilesh Cabral says householders will be offered the chance to reduce energy bills without any upfront cost by leasing roofspace to installers as part of plans to add 15 MW of solar capacity in Goa by March.
Opinion is divided over the urgency of addressing the issue. While some developers feel the 25-year lifetime of modules offers plenty of time to prepare an action plan, other industry voices claim Indian-made products don’t last half that long and one recent report pointed out waste is already piling up thanks to defects and faulty installation.
An AFP newswire report this week said Ministry of New & Renewable Energy secretary Anand Kumar had announced plans for 30 GW of generation capacity in the state of Gujarat and 25 GW in Rajasthan, all of it along a 20-25km strip of semi arid land on the border.
The latest blow in the political battle between clean energy project developers and an anti-renewables state government has seen the electricity regulator order power distribution companies to honor PPAs signed after a public tender.
India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has suggested minimum 25-year power purchase agreements, while also opening up the option to include energy storage in solar-wind hybrid generation projects that are procured under its public tender regime.
A report by Indian ratings agency CRISIL points to a rising rate of tender failures, an inconsistent policy approach from central and state governments and restrictive solar energy tariff caps and says India could have just 104 GW of renewables capacity by 2022.
Take-up has been slow considering the nation’s mammoth agricultural industry but, as a packed session on the topic at the recent Renewable Energy India show illustrated, attitudes may be changing in a nation which is already installing solar greenhouses.
A bid to renegotiate agreed solar and wind power tariffs in Andhra Pradesh appears to be part of a deliberate campaign by the chief minister elected in May to erase the renewable energy commitments made by his predecessor.
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