India’s solar capacity addition jumped over 12-fold to 2,488 megawatt (MW) during the April-June period of 2021 as compared to the year-ago period, according to Mercom India Research.
It is a 19 percent increase quarter-over-quarter, compared to 2,090 MW installed in Q1 2021. It is the highest addition in three years.
Solar energy’s share of new power capacity additions were the highest ever in the first half of any year. “Solar installations were up 1,114 percent year-over-year compared to 205 MW added in Q2 2020 when COVID-19 crippled the sector. Solar capacity additions in India in Q2 2021 were the highest in a quarter since Q2 of 2018,” according to the report.
It added that in the first half (H1) of 2021, India added 4,578 MW of solar, a 251 percent increase compared to the same period the previous year. Installations exceeded 3.2 gigawatts (GW) of solar installed in all of the calendar year (CY) 2020.
According to the report, installations were significantly higher than the previous quarter despite various state-level lockdowns because of the second wave of COVID-19.
“Even with a strong quarter, the industry continues to battle uncertainties around higher component costs and logistical issues. With duties and import restrictions, purchasing quality solar components at the best price will be the biggest challenge for the industry going forward as solar system costs ticked up for the fourth quarter in a row,” said Raj Prabhu, CEO of Mercom Capital Group.
The report has increased its forecast by 23 percent in the medium-case scenario to about 8 GW to 9 GW in 2021. It said that by the end of Q2 2021, cumulative solar installations stood at 43.6 GW.
“In Q2 2021, Rajasthan and Gujarat were the top states for solar, followed by Uttar Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh. The top 10 states accounted for 95 percent of installations in the quarter,” it added. According to the report, the solar energy’s share of new capacity additions was the highest ever in the H1 of any year, accounting for 53 percent of all power capacity added in 1H 2021 while renewables made up about 71 percent of capacity additions in the H1 of 2021.