Five key policy initiatives on which the new government should focus to promote solar power in the country
While Modi government has been recognised for its solar initiatives in Gujarat, it need to replicate the similar policy framework for promoting solar power in the other states in the country as its agenda for 100 days of new government. While its initiatives to promote whill not only create rural jobs, but also will attract the foreign investment in the country. The overall investment quantum can be significantly high if GOI facilitate the favourable policies to promote solar power in the country. There is an urgent need for the new government to focus on following policy initiatives for faster solar project development in the country.
- Identify government land and provide the funding support for developing the solar parks and the integral transmission systems in the solar focused states such as Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Tamilnadu, Andhrapradesh, etc.
- As solar power is variable in nature, hence some of the pilot projects which are integrated solar-gas hybrid projects can also be planned rather than focusing the additional gas/coal based power generation. These projects will address the peak load requirement at a cheaper rate.
- There are new and innovative solar technologies available which are to be adopted at a commercial scale. Government of India can consider a solar park for the testing and development of the new and innovative technologies under an umbrella tariff framework to make them bankable. Government of India can provide some separate funds for such demonstration projects which has potential for take off as a commercial scale.
- Financing of solar projects in India through the regular commercial banks is at a very high interest rate and require the collaterals from the solar project developers. There is an urgent need to develop Innovative financial products that can reduce the lending rates for the solar projects. May be a partial risk guarantee fund is created by GOI which can be used to provide cheaper lending to the solar projects.
- Renewable energy projects in India are 100% owned by private sector players. The major attraction is through the accelerated depreciation and open access. Which solar resource is concentrated in few states only, open access and interstate charges can be waived off to facilitate the solar power as a captive source to the investors who are having their consuming facilities in other states.