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India’s Biomass Potential,Installed Biomass Capacity by States and CERC Biomass Electricity Subsidies

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India’s Biomass Potential

India’s Biomass Electricity Capacity at 2 GW (including cogeneration)  is around 4% of the world’s total Biomass Power Capacity of around 50 GW.US is the leader in Biomass Capacity with around 20% of the world’s biomass potential.India has set ambitious plans for expanding the biomass power capacity in the next 10 years.India’s Ministry of Renewable Energy has set a very high target of multiplying the power capacity by 10 times in the next 10 years.India’s Total Biomass Potential with existing Technology is around 25 GW of which around 8% has been realized till date.India produce s 500 million tonnes of biomass per year,  120-150 million tonnes is surplus

Biomass Potential 25 GW with installed capacity of 2 GW

  1. Co-generation Potential of 5 GW with installed capacity of 1.2 GW
  2. Agro-residue Capacity of 17 GW with 900 MW installed
  3. Waste to energy 3 GW with only around 70 MW installed

Biomass Power Capacity till 2009

State                            Installed Capacity (MW)
Uttar Pradesh                  372.5
Andhra Pradesh               343.3
3. Tamil Nadu                   333.7
4. Karnataka                       294.2
5. Maharashtra               185.5
6. Chhattisgarh                156.1
7. Rajasthan                        31.3
8. Punjab                               28.0
9. Haryana                            6.0
10. Madhya Pradesh         1.0
11. Gujarat                               .5

Source : MNRE

A large number of private companies have entered the biomass energy sector in order to capitalize on the potential of biomass growth.Most of India’s power plants are less than 50 MW in power capacity with a large number of biomass plant of 1-2 MW in size.No massive biomass plants of greater than 100 MW capacity is being planned in India unlike Europe where gigantic biomass plants are in the planning stage.

Note almost 30% of India’s Energy Needs are being met by Biomass Energy mainly in rural areas for cooking and heating.Most of this energy is inefficiently produced leading to air pollution and global warming.However most of the biomass plants being built in India are much more efficient.

CERC Feed in Tariff for Biomass Produced Electricity for Different States

Note India’s Electricity Regulator gives a number of Incentives for Biomass Generated Electricity namely

1) Depreciation

2) Feed In Tariffs for 13 Years out of a useful life of 20 Years

3) Sharing of Carbon Credits under the CDM Protocol

4) Preferential Loan and Interest Rates

5) Payment Rebates by Utilities

Some of the state Feed in Tariffs

India does not have a centralized rate of FIT for Biomass Electricity and it is different for different states depending on the assumptions.Here is the FIT for a few of the major Biomass States in India

State                          Feed in Tariff (Rs./kWh)
Andhra Pradesh                  Rs4.15
Gujarat Cogeneration       Rs 5.17
Madhya Pradesh                 Rs3.93
Maharashtra                          Rs4.76
Maharashtra Cogeneration RS4.80
Punjab                                        Rs5.49
Rajasthan                                  Rs4.73
Tamil Nadu                              Rs5.08
West Bengal                             Rs4.88


India’s Biomass Potential is around 25 GW of which only about 8% in total has been realized.The Sugar Industry have been the most proactive in generating power from sugar residue.Waste to Energy remains mostly unrealized while there is massive potential for generating biomass electricity from agri residue like rice husk etc.


Abhishek Shah

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