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The fate of almost 1,000 megawatt of solar power capacity in India’s solar programme hangs in balance even after a month and a half since US-based SunEdison declared bankruptcy.
Despite this the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy is confident of meeting its targets of adding 12,000 MW of capacity in 2016-17 and 15,000 MW of capacity in 2017-18. India’s total installed solar power capacity stands at around 6,998 MW as on April 30.
“There are no stranded projects as of now. The only doubt is whether SunEdison’s projects will take off or not. We are still waiting for clarity from the company on the same. Even if they are unable to commission their projects, we would always have the option of bidding them out again,” said a senior official of the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy. SunEdison has 450 MW of solar projects already operational, but uncertainty is more over the yet to be commissioned 1000 MW. The company on its part has been maintaining that it is committed to India projects but is open to selling some stake in them.
The official added that since the tendering process has been completed for more than the targeted capacity addition for 2016-17, the developments at SunEdison will not impact the Ministry’s targets. Overall in the country, tendering is already complete for 15,500 MW of solar power capacity and another 5,500 MW of tenders are expected to come in the next couple of months.
AP, Telangana on top
The States leading the way in solar capacity addition are Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, which has helped raise the solar power capacity in the country. Both these States have seen a three-fold and five-fold increase respectively in solar power capacity in the last six months, according to the Ministry data.
In Telangana, installed solar power capacity stood at 527 MW on April 30, up from around 91 MW on November 30, 2015. In Andhra Pradesh the capacity stood at 792 MW on April 30, up from about 283 MW on November 30, 2015. Punjab has also doubled its solar power capacity over the last six months. On April 30, the State had 405 MW of installed solar power capacity as compared with 200.32 MW on November 30, 2015. Solar power consultancy firm Bridge To India expects the country to be the fourth largest market for solar power globally with installed capacity expected to cross 10,000 MW.
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