Source: The Hindu Business Line, Oct 15, 2020
Chennai: As renewable energy sector is recovering from Covid impact, the new capacity addition during the September quarter has improved quarter-on-quarter basis though there was 50 per cent drop when compared with the first-half period of last fiscal.
With the addition of 1559 MW of new capacity during July-September 2020 period, total new capacity for the first half of this fiscal stood at 2152 MW when compared with 4273 MW in the year-ago period. H1 capacity of the last fiscal was one of the highest additions in a half-year period in recent years.
The solar segment remains a major contributor and added 1423 MW (includes of 722 MW of ground-mounted and 701 MW of rooftop) capacity during April-September 2020 period. Wind sector added 380 MW of new capacity to the grid, according to the data of Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE).
“The onset of the pandemic and the lockdown led to delays on many projects, but installations have resumed and should continue to grow,” said Andrew Hines, Co-founder and Chief Commercial Officer, CleanMax. The company provides renewable energy solutions to the commercial and the industrial segment. “The demand from this segment continues to be very strong,” he added.
As of September 2020, the total grid-connected installed renewable power capacity stood at 89,229 MW, of which wind power segment accounted for 38,124 MW.
The fast-growing solar segment had a cumulative installed capacity of 36,050 MW (includes both ground-mounted (32,834 MW) and 3216 MW of rooftop capacity).
The government has set a capacity addition target of 14,380 MW for this fiscal. Solar power is expected to add about 11,000 MW (9000 MW from ground-mounted projects and 2000 MW through rooftop capacity), while wind power segment is likely to bring in 3000 MW of capacity.
Stages of implementation
During September-end, Union Minister of State for New and Renewable Energy and Power told Lok Sabha that 45.11 GW of capacity was under various stages of implementation and 28.43 GW capacity was under various stages of bidding.
“Tender issuance has improved from 175 MW in August to 1288 MW (through 8 projects) in September. However, auction capacity fell from 2840 MW in August to 110 MW in September. Overall, a total of 26.2 GW worth of tenders have been issued during January-September period and of which 16.4 GW was issued in the solar segment, 8.9 GW in hybrid projects 800 MW for wind, according to renewable energy consulting firm Bridge to India Meanwhile, industry analysts point out that renewable project developers continue to face challenges and policy-related uncertainties. Possible imposition of basic customs duty has contributed to uncertainty for developers, while some hybrid projects are facing land acquisition issues.