According to the Bridge to India Report, India added solar energy and wind power energy of a capacity of up to 4,908 megawatts (MW) only in 2020. Any additional capacity of renewable energy is usually highly appreciated given the need for the clean energy transition. However, most people were probably expecting more since India has achieved that before. For the last five years, 2020 recorded the least additional renewable energy capacity.

Solar power registered an additional 2620 MW, whereas wind energy capacity was 1390 MW. Gong by the year-on-year percentages, the former dropped by 60%, and the latter registered a drop of 40%. Solar installations were 36% less than the previous year’s number as it was 979 MW only in 2020.  It is important to note that the total number of renewable energy capacity is now at 94,181 MW, including biomass and small hydro.

However, the report says that the drop in 2020 is justifiable to some extent given the circumstances throughout the year. The highest contributor to the decline was the coronavirus global pandemic. Project construction and development became a problem since operations and finances were affected. Initially, there was even the issue of lockdown. Come May, the government lifted the lockdown, but that was not the end of the challenges. The government took relatively long to issue approvals, shortages of labor and equipment became the order of the day, and available workers had to work with restrictive practices. With all the above, the progress was in jeopardy.

For instance, shipping equipment in China didn’t make it easy for the sector. The prices of metal and solar modules also well. Transmission connectivity and land acquisition started taking longer than before. The bottom line is that things were tough, and the addition was out of sheer hard work from the involved parties who really gave it their best under such conditions.

Nevertheless, Bridge of India managing director Vinay Rustagi said there was room for improvement. After all, other industries faced the same challenges but still did a great job. He also highlighted that the future is still bright. As far as he and his team is concerned, they wouldn’t be surprised to see the sector grow to 123 GW by 2022. That would be an additional capacity of around 29 GW in two years.

Rustagi asked the government to timely identify challenges and fix them urgently upon that to increase implementation speed. One of the challenges is the financial conditions that have changed from bad to worse over time. There are also tender cancellations contributing to the pathetic progress that is quite discouraging and frustrating.

By Adam

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