India’s plan to install 500 GW (gigawatt) of renewable energy capacity by 2030 will involve an investment of at least ₹2.44 lakh crore or ₹2.44 trillion, according to a committee constituted by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA).
“The plan we are launching today is in line with our commitments and it will also pave the way for adding the required generation capacity,” said R.K. Singh, Minister for Power and Renewable Energy at an event to launch the report on Wednesday.
As part of its international climate commitments, India has said that it would source roughly half its energy needs from non-fossil fuel sources by 2030. Financing the energy transition of developing countries such as India is among the thorniest geo-political issues, with India having said multiple times at United Nations climate conferences that “trillions of dollars” will be required.
The committee, headed by the chairman of the Central Electricity Authority, had representatives from Solar Energy Corporation of India, Central Transmission Utility of India Ltd, Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd, National Institute of Solar Energy, and National Institute of Wind Energy. They were tasked with setting out a plan for the transmission system required for having 500 GW of non-fossil fuel-based installed capacity by 2030.
The planned, additional transmission systems required for having 500 GW of non-fossil fuel include 8,120 ckm (circuit kilometre) of High Voltage Direct Current Transmission corridors; 25,960 ckm of 765 kV (kilovolt) AC lines, 15,758 ckm of 400 kV lines and 1052 ckm of 220 kV cable at an estimated cost of ₹2.44 lakh crore. Circuit kilometres indicate the actual length of power-line needed to carry electricity.
The transmission plan also includes systems required for transporting 10 GW of off-shore wind-based energy located in Gujarat and Tamil Nadu at an estimated cost of ₹28,000 crore. With the planned transmission system, the inter-regional capacity will increase to about 1.50 lakh MW by 2030 from 1.12 lakh MW at present.
Because renewable-energy generation is only available for a limited time every day, the plan envisages installing battery storage capacity worth 51.5 GW by 2030 to provide “round-the-clock power to end-consumers,” the Ministry said in a statement.
The plan has identified major upcoming non-fossil fuel generation centres in the country, including at Fatehgarh, Bhadla and Bikaner in Rajasthan, Khavda in Gujarat, and Anantapur and Kurnool in Andhra Pradesh.
“With the above transmission plan for having 500 GW of non-fossil fuel capacity by 2030, along with a transparent bidding system, an open market, an expeditious dispute resolution system, India will continue to be one of the most attractive destinations for investment in renewable energy,” the statement added.
With 500 GW of installed capacity to generate electricity from non-fossil fuel sources by 2030, cleaner fuel will comprise 50% of the installed capacity mix. The installed electricity-generating capacity in the country at present is 409 GW, including 173 GW from non-fossil fuel sources, which is about 42% of the total.