01 June 2010

India adds record renewables capacity in past year

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Country outstrips UK, Japan, France and Canada as renewable energy capacity soars

India added 2.33GW of grid-connected renewable power capacity during the year to the end of March, according to a statement from the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, more than doubling the rate at which it installed renewables capacity during the previous year.

The record performance takes the country's total installed capacity of renewable energy to 16.8GW, far outstripping the performance of many industrialised nations including the UK, France, Japan and Canada.

According to the new figures, 1.57 GW of wind power were added during the year compared to 790 MW the previous year, although the rate of expansion dropped slightly compared to 2007-2008 when 1.66GW of new wind energy capacity was added.

But the country has still installed more capacity than leading wind energy markets Germany and Spain over the past two years and now boasts over 11GW of wind capacity, making India the fifth largest wind energy generator in the world.

The highest growth was shown by the biomass-agriwaste and small hydro sector, which nearly tripled their contribution from 250MW in 2008-2009 to 750MW a year later.

Only eight megawatts of solar energy capacity was installed, although the government has announced that it wants to add one gigawatt of new solar capacity by 2013, and 20GW by 2020 as part of its high profile Solar Mission project.

The spike in installed renewables this year gives India a boost towards reaching its target of having 25GW of installed renewables by March 2012, representing over 10 per cent of the 220GW of installed power nationwide.

(businessGreen)

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