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Solar Rooftop Leasing in India to Become Next Green Growth Sector

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Solar Rooftops India

There are hardly any rooftop solar panels on homes in India due to lack of knowledge, government support and distribution. Solar Energy incentives in most of the developed solar markets in Europe have clearly shifted their preference to distributed small rooftop solar installations on residences. This is because it reduces the need for expensive power generation infrastructure, improves reliability and puts money in the hands of the common citizens. Spain, Germany and Italy which are the 3 biggest markets in the world have done this. India however has not paid any focus to rooftop solar installations except for Delhi. Note the Delhi government had earlier come up with a plan to provide subsidies to solar panels on homes. However that plan was shelved due to fears of corruption (which is a massive problem in all spheres and generally a given with all government programs).

The Indian Government is now set to bring out a policy to promote the leasing out of rooftops for buildings of solar arrays by developers and utilities. Note till now India’s solar program has mainly focused on large ground mounted solar plants. Rooftops have been largely ignored even though most countries with large solar capacities have moved on to focus their subsidies on distributed rooftop generation from solar panels. The Gujarat government has already piloted the solar rooftop by giving two 2.5 MW projects to solar developers.

Note utilizing empty rooftops on buildings makes more sense as it does not require scarce land acquisition and also reduces transmission costs for utilities. The Delhi government too had proposed a program where homeowners could lend their roofs to solar developers before abandoning it. The government of Karnataka is also in the process of identifying large commercial buildings where large solar installations of 100 kw capacity can be built. Note even without subsidies industrial customers are looking to build solar arrays on their roofts to reduce the increasing electricity prices which have reached Rs 10-12/kwh in some parts of the country like Maharashtra.

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Hindu

The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy will soon announce a policy to facilitate the setting up of 10 MW solar photovoltaic power plants on rooftops of buildings. The details of the policy are being given final shape by the Ministry. But Rao said that it would be a ‘rent-a-roof’ kind of project, where an owner of a roof may rent it out to a project developer. The developer would put up the solar power plant and sell the electricity to the grid. Rao said it had not yet been decided as to in which cities the rooftop plants would come up, but he stressed the projects would come up in places that had no grid stability issues.

PG

Sneha Shah

I am Sneha, the Editor-in-chief for the Blog. We would be glad to receive suggestions, inputs & comments on GWI from you guys to keep it going! You can contact me for consultancy/trade inquires by writing an email to greensneha@yahoo.in or call me on +913340606492.

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