All sites for solar parks finalised: Ministry of New and Renewable Energy
The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has completed the first stage of its ambitious solar parks project, which envisages setting up solar clusters across the country with an overall installed capacity of 20,000 MW by the end of 2018-19. With two new areas selected this year, the process of identifying the land on which these parks will be located is complete. The new sites are in the Anantapur district of Andhra Pradesh and across the districts of Bhiwani, Hisar and Mahendragarh in Haryana, both having an installation capacity of 500 MW. In all, 34 solar parks across 21states and one union territory are in various stages of being built. There are five in Rajasthan (total capacity 3,251 MW), four in Andhra Pradesh (4,000 MW), four in Madhya Pradesh (2,750 MW), three in Maharashtra (1,500 MW), and one each in Karnataka (2,000 MW), Himachal Pradesh (1,000 MW), Odisha (1,000 MW), Gujarat (700 MW), Uttar Pradesh (600 MW), Tamil Nadu (500 MW), Haryana (500 MW), Chhattisgarh (500 MW), Telangana (500 MW) and West Bengal (500 MW). The original plan, formulated in 2014-15, aimed at creating 25 solar parks over a five-year period, each with a capacity of 500 MW or more, to reach a total capacity of 20,000 MW. However, to make the projects more inclusive, small and hilly states that find it difficult to provide the vast expanses needed for solar parks of the size suggested — an area of 5-6 acres is needed to set up 1 MW capacity — have been allowed to build smaller ones. These include one solar park each in Arunachal Prades .. (100 MW), Assam (69 MW), Jammu and Kashmir (100 MW), Kerala (200 MW), Uttarakhand (50 MW), Nagaland (60 MW), Meghalaya (20 MW) as well as Andaman and Nicobar (100 MW).