NEW DELHI: India has achieved 20 gw (gigawatt) cumulative solar capacity, achieving the milestone four years ahead of the target for 2022 originally set in the National Solar Mission.
The achievement comes on the back of a major renewable energy push by Modi government, which after coming to power in 2014 had scaled up the target to 100 gw of solar capacity by 2022.
According to the latest India research report by green energy market tracker Mercom Capital, the utility-scale cumulative installations now stand at approximately 18.4 gw, with rooftop solar accounting for another 1.6 gw.
For the first time, solar was the top source of new power capacity additions in India during the calendar year 2017, with preliminary figures showing solar installations reaching 9.6 gw in this period and accounting for 45% of total capacity additions.
But the country has reached the milestone at a time when protectionist measures threaten to slow down activity in the industry. The pace of overall solar installations is expected to be less impressive in 2018 as several protectionist government policies appear poised to increase costs and uncertainty.