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India's ambitious solar energy goals within reach, says minister

India's ambitious solar energy goals within reach, says minister

India’s goal to produce 100 GW of solar power is easily within reach after investors pledged enough money to fund double that.

Further funding for India’s massive solar power plans has been pledged from a number of potential investors and brings within reach the nation’s goal to produce 100 gigawatts (GW) of solar energy by 2022, according to Indian energy minister, Piyush Goyal.

 

“The government stands committed to making renewable energy India's gift to the world,” Goyal said at last month’s RE-Invest 2015 conference.

Also during the event, Indian prime minister, Narendra Modi, announced the challenge “Megawatts to Gigawatts” which aims to up production of solar and wind power to 100 GW and 60 GW, respectively, in just eight years.

An article in The Hill outlined how Modi also called for investors to contribute to challenge and pledge the $100 billion needed to meet these ambitious goals. And despite doubts, over 200 companies have answered the call and pledged $200 billion.

Goyal noted that even if only half of the funding is realised, India will still have enough backing to realise its goals. “I am quite sure that the initial target we had for $100-billion investments in the sector will certainly be exceeded,” he added.

It seems that India now has four mega solar plant projects on the go, which includes the six GW solar plant from the fossil fuel company Reliance Energy, which equals all the conventional output there already. When built, and if the company switches to purely solar power, it would be the first fossil fuel company to switch to clean energy. The other projects include a 750 megawatt project, a 4 GW project and a 10 GW project.

 

The sizes of these projects highlight India’s commitment to the cause. Meanwhile, India's strategy to focus on creating sustainable cities will ensure the nation’s economy gains a boost, according to Michael Bloomberg, the former New York Mayor.

If India achieves its goal and brings solar electricity to households that currently lack conventional power it would be “a success story told - and copied - around the world”, Bloomberg said at the RE-Invest 2015 conference.

To read the full article on The Hill click here.


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