‘Attracting green investment a challenge for India’

Attracting investment is one of the challenges India faces to reach its solar target. Rangan Banerjee, Professor of Industrial Institute of Technology Bombay told ELN: “The main issue is investment. When […]

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By Jacqueline Echevarria

Attracting investment is one of the challenges India faces to reach its solar target.

Rangan Banerjee, Professor of Industrial Institute of Technology Bombay told ELN: “The main issue is investment. When we look for an investment, if we compare a coal-based pipeline with a solar plant, we will need an upfront investment of about eight to nine times the same amount. So the question is where does the capital come from?”

Speaking to ELN after a solar energy seminar at Imperial College London, he said it is still difficult to know how much money the government will invest to achieve the new solar energy target of 100GW by 2022.

He added: “The expectations are a big amount will come from private investment but we have to wait and see how it works.”

India generates 80% of its electricity from coal. With the new target it expects 17% of the energy to come from renewable sources excluding hydro and thermal power, said Mr Banerjee.

He added: “India has been growing very significantly in solar energy. In 2008 its solar generation was a couple of megawatts and today it has increased to 3,000MW so it is really getting higher.”

Gas emissions will be “significantly” reduced in the country as a result of more renewable energy use, said Professor Banerjee.