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India’s Incompetent Bureaucrats cover up their Solar Policy Failures with Lame Excuses

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Only 1 Solar Thermal Plant built out of 5 Plants

India had allotted 50% of the power target to be generated during Phase 1 of the JNNSM to thermal power energy. That was a stupid policy move as I had pointed out at that point of time. Not to beat my own drum but the thermal power plants are yet to be built despite the deadline of 28 months being over. Only 1 solar thermal plant of 50 MW out of the 5 plants have been built. Solar thermal technology has become obsolete in the interim, as solar PV technology has advanced by leaps and bounds.

Read on GWI Advantages and Disadvantages of Solar Thermal Energy. 

The stupid bureaucrats who conceived this scheme should be fired, instead of now trying to salvage their failure by not penalizing the solar thermal power developers. There is a fine of R 1 lakh/Mw/day for the thermal solar power plants but that will not be enforced as the MNRE mandarins are giving the excuse that large CSP projects in the USA and Spain have made it difficult for developers to procure equipment.

This is totally false as CSP plants in US are getting scrapped and solar PV plants are being built instead. Many top CSP companies have gone out of business which means that components should be easily available as their suppliers do a distress sale. The real reason is that it is just not economical to build those solar thermal plants at the price they were bid for. While the solar PV panel plants developers are getting reasonable returns as solar panel prices dropped off a cliff, the solar thermal guys have had no such luck. Giving them extension won’t help as these are loss making ventures. The MNRE babus should stop making excuses, stop these CSP plants and allocate the money to subsidize distributed rooftop solar projects in the country.


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

One Response so far | Have Your Say!

  1. Gilbert Cohen

    Dear Sneha Shah
    I totally agree with you and recognize that the Indian policy for the first phase of the JNNSM was not well managed. Awarding projects to locale Companies with no experience was the biggest mistake they made. The main reasons these plants are not all completed, is that the initial cost proposed by the developers was totally unreasonable. By the way, this cost was basically dictated by ignorant policy makers.
    However, I STRONGLY disagree with the statements stipulating that CSP technologies are obsolete. For large scale solar power plants, this is the only solution to provide reliable solar power to the Indian grid. PV plants cannot provide the power stability required for the Utilities. CSP with storage or in hybrid mode could provide baseload as well as peak power.
    I am a strong believer in Solar Energy and think that the Indian market is vast enough to include all technologies.