In an attempt to boost the rooftop solar power market in India departments and ministries of the central government themselves have announce plans to set up solar power systems.
According to a recently issued document by the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE), as many as 52 departments and ministries of the central government have pledged to add almost 6 GW of rooftops solar power capacity.
The allocation of capacity among these departments and ministries has been done on the basis of land and rooftop area available with them. Possible capacity addition has been determined by assuming that only 50% of the vacant or unused land/rooftop area shall be used for the installation of solar power systems.
The Ministry of Human Resource Development is expected to install the largest capacity – 2,140 MW enough to generate almost 3 billion kWh electricity yielding savings of Rs 300 crore (US$45 million) every year. Ministry of Defence is expected to add 1,328 MW capacity as it owns large land parcels through the defence forces.
All departments and ministries have designated an agency that shall overlook the implementation of the projects. Most have chosen the Solar Energy Corporation of India which is expected to allocate projects through competitive auctions.
In total, 4,480 MW capacity is expected to come up on land while 1,458 MW capacity would be installed on rooftops. The total generation from these projects would be 8.3 billion kWh every year. This generation would translate into almost 7.5 million tonnes of carbon emissions offset and over Rs 831 crore (US$124 million) in monetary savings every year.
The Indian government has announced plans to have an operational solar power capacity of 100 GW by March 2022, including 40 GW from rooftop solar power projects.