Renewable energy sources underutilised, says white paper. This was at a time when similarly placed States such as Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh made full use of the existing potential to enhance the installed capacity manifold.
The State government has focussed its attention on leveraging the untapped potential offered by the solar and wind energy sources to overcome the not so encouraging power situation in Andhra Pradesh post bifurcation.
The State government is learnt to be preparing a detailed presentation to make a strong pitch for the Central government’s support to harness the renewable energy sources to the fullest extent. Accordingly, the government is gearing up to brief the Union Ministry of Power about the existing potential and the means that would help the State in fully harnessing it to overcome power shortages.
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, in the white paper released on power on Wednesday, lamented how the renewable energy sector, especially wind and solar power, had been neglected over the past decade. The installed capacity in wind power in the State is at 731 MW against the potential pegged at 14,500 MW and the case of solar energy with installed capacity at 113 MW is no different.
This was at a time when similarly placed States such as Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh made full use of the existing potential to enhance the installed capacity manifold. Drawing parallels, Mr. Naidu said the wind power capacity in Tamil Nadu stood at 7,251 MW and that of Maharashtra at 3,472 MW. Following these were Gujarat (3,384 MW), Rajasthan (2,734 MW) and Karnataka (2,312 MW).
In the solar energy sector, Gujarat is leading with 916 MW, Rajasthan (730 MW), Madhya Pradesh (347 MW) and Maharashtra (250 MW). “This is gross under utilisation of the potential in Andhra Pradesh as compared to the other similarly placed States,” the white paper said.
When contacted by The Hindu, Energy Secretary Ajay Jain said the government would shortly come out with a ‘progressive policy’ aimed at harnessing the wind and solar power sectors in the coming days. The announcement of the policy would be followed by calling for tenders for purchase of solar/wind power from generators.