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India’s largest state moves forward on Solar Power though scale seems too small

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UP to join the Solar bandwagon

All major Indian states have launched independent solar power programs using a reverse auction bidding mechanism which has been pioneered by the Indian federal government. Gujarat was the only state to use a fixed feed in tariff program which proved to be a huge success. Uttar Pradesh has become the latest state to join the solar bandwagon by giving 200 MW of solar capacity to seven bidders based on a reverse auction. Given UP’s size the 200 MW capacity seems too small, since other states such as AP and Tamil Nadu have given much bigger capacities of 1 to 3 GW to bidders. Uttar Pradesh suffers from a major power deficit and the state is one of the most underdeveloped states in India.

Read on GWI Gujarat trailblazes solar energy growth in India with over 65% capacity and innovative 1 MW floating solar power plant.

 Major cities and towns suffer from 8-10 hours brownouts regularly and solar energy is an ideal answer. Instead of offering support for small distributed rooftop solar solutions, the state is copying others by promoting ground hogging large utility scale power plants. This does not make sense but this is how the Indian governments work. The state is also partnering with India’s state owned hydro power utility NHPC to build a 100 MW solar power plant. The tariff and financing model has not been decided, though the land has been identified.

It has become feasible to install solar power systems in homes and buildings across India as the backup power solutions are very expensive. Diesel power costs R 15-17/ KwH, compared to the Rs 7-10/ KwH for solar electricity. A government push could really bring about a solar revolution in India. Some cities such as Madurai have made it mandatory to install solar systems on new buildings.This should be made common across India as fuel price are rising rapidly. India imports billions of dollars of crude oil each year which the country cannot afford. The massive current account deficit and the crashing rupee attest to this fact. However, the Indian bureaucracy remains short sighted and the politicians are even worse.


The Uttar Pradesh Cabinet on Thursday gave its approval to establish a joint venture company of the Uttar Pradesh New and Renewable Energy Development Agency and National Hydroelectric Power Corporation to tap the solar energy potential of the state…The 100 MW capacity solar power plant would be based at Kalpi in Jalaun district. The UPNEDA will be making available 267.47 hectare of non-agricultural land for this purpose and the power plant will be installed by National Hydroelectric Power Corporation. The total cost incurred in the project is in the vicinity of Rs 400 crore and the project is expected to become operational in a time span of 14-15 months, after the signing of the MoU…In another decision, the Uttar Pradesh Cabinet has also approved the selection of seven companies on the basis of competitive tariff based bidding for the 200 MW power capacity under UPNEDA’s Solar Energy Policy-2013 after receiving the single coated tariff. Further action in this regard would be taken by UPNEDA.


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

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