Indian states must step up to help India achieve its target of 175 GW under renewable energy: Ember

Four of India’s states and union territories (UTs) have already surpassed their 2022 renewable energy (RE) capacity targets, as India continues its race to 175 Gigawatt (GW) renewable energy (RE) by December 2022, said a report by the global think-tank Ember. However, 27 Indian states have not yet reached halfway toward their respective targets and would need a big step up to meet these by the end of the year.

Ember’s research titled ‘India’s race to 175 GW’ shows that India has installed 110 GW RE as of March 2022.

India saw 9.2 GW of RE capacity addition in the last six months, with nearly three-quarters coming from RE deployments in Rajasthan and Gujarat. As of March 2022, three states and one UT have now surpassed their end-of-year targets — Telangana (248 percent), Rajasthan (119 percent), Karnataka (107 percent), and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands (129 percent).

Five key Indian states account for two-thirds of this 65 GW shortfall, Maharashtra (11 GW), Uttar Pradesh (10 GW), Andhra Pradesh (9 GW), Madhya Pradesh (7 GW) and Tamil Nadu (5 GW). Of these states, only Tamil Nadu installed more than 0.5 GW of RE capacity in the last six months.

The country is currently behind on its solar and wind targets. To meet its 100 GW solar target by the end of 2022, 85 per cent growth is needed in the next nine months. Wind power grew by just three per cent in the last three quarters and needs nearly a 50 per cent rise in the next three quarters to reach the 60 GW wind energy target.

India’s coal phase-down commitment at COP26 makes it critical to deliver its renewables targets. The country’s electricity demand is expected to grow at an average annual rate of four to five per cent until 2030. India targets 450 GW renewables and 500 GW non-fossil capacity by 2030 which can keep coal generation from rising over the current levels. But this requires a five-fold growth in solar and four-fold growth in wind in the next eight years.

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