November 5th, 2015
Image Source: netzeroenterprises
In a development that might be considered a huge boost in India’s effort to shift to renewable and clean sources of energy, US-based SunEdison has won a bid to sell solar power in India at a record low tariff of Rs. 4.63 per kilowatt-hour.
SunEdison Inc., a global renewable-energy company headquartered in the US, won the auction for a 500 megawatt project in Andhra Pradesh during a reverse e-auction conducted by NTPC.
The Modi government has been pushing for clean and renewable sources of energy and has set an ambitious target of multiplying renewable energy generation to 175 gigawatts by 2020. The government expects clean energy to yield business worth $160 billion in India in the next five years.
Though solar energy has the advantage of being renewable, localised and almost entirely pollution-free, it has still a long way to go before it can compete with coal, given its relatively higher cost of establishment and production. Production cost of coal power lies anywhere between Rs. 1.5 to Rs. 5 per kWh, whereas the previous lowest solar tariff was Rs. 5.05/kWh. However, falling rates of solar energy could soon mark the shift towards renewable energy sources in India, and provide cheap electricity to distant places that are still cut off from the central power grid owing to high transmission costs.