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Solar installations almost trebled in 2015-16

M Ramesh Chennai | Updated on January 20, 2018

India added 3,018 MW of solar power capacity in 2015-16, compared with 1,112 MW in the previous year. With the record installations last year, India’s grid-connected solar power capacity stood at 6,762 MW as at end-March, 2016. Both the annual and cumulative numbers exceed their targets of 2,000 MW and 5,000 MW respectively.

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy had said in a press release that the country’s solar capacity stood at 5,775.5 MW as on March 7. This means that almost 1,000 MW of capacity was added in the last three weeks of the year, almost as much as in the entire previous year.

Tamil Nadu, with 919 MW installed during the year, topped the list of states-making up for its poor performance in wind installations — 197 MW — ranking 3{+r}{+d} from the bottom among nine states, only after the new state of Telangana and Kerala. Andhra Pradesh followed with 475 MW and Telangana, 360 MW.

Tarun Kapoor, Joint Secretary in the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, told Business Line today that 2016-17 would be an even better year for solar. “We have to do 10,500 MW, so as to reach the 17,000 MW mark by March 2017,” he said.

India has come a long way in solar from its humble beginnings in 2010. At the end of the December 2009, India’s solar capacity amounted to a negligible 6 MW. It took three years to come up to 1,645 MW.

The government has set a target of 100,000 MW cumulative capacity to be achieved by 2021-22, which calls for further ramping up of annual installations to 17,500 MW in three years.

Published on April 18, 2016

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