Wednesday, Jul 23, 2014Wednesday, Jul 23, 2014
News
 

Indian solar ambitions take shape as costs tumble

Published on Jan 15, 2014 12:46 PM
 

NEW DELHI (AFP) - Electricity-hungry India is flipping the switch on huge new solar energy projects to fuel its growing economy, using cheap - mainly Chinese - foreign technology to reduce once sky-high generation costs to competitive levels.

Since 2010, India has hiked installed solar power capacity from a meagre 17.8 megawatts to more than 2,000MW, official figures show, as part of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's aim to make "the sun occupy centre-stage" in the country's energy mix.

Key to the progress has been a rapid fall in the cost per unit of solar electricity to close to what is known as "grid parity" - the cost of conventional electricity generated by carbon-gas emitting coal.

"The world is watching the ability of Indian entrepreneurs to achieve grid parity for solar energy," India's World Bank country director Onno Ruhl said recently.

 
If you are not a subscriber, you can get instant, unlimited access here