Renewable Energy Scenario in India 2020
India’s primary energy consumption is increasing substantially, due to the progress in prosperity and size of the population. Conventionally, Fossil fuels are used as the primary source of electricity production. However, the generation of electricity from fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and natural gas results in one-third of global Co2 emissions and other environmental problems. Renewable energy becomes an alternate source for generating electricity. They are reliable, plentiful, clean, and inexhaustible sources of energy. Renewable energy sources include wind energy, solar energy, tidal energy, hydropower, and biomass. In this article, the role of renewable energy in India has been summarized.
Renewable energy resources have capabilities to offer solutions to the long-lasting energy demand being handled by developing countries. The most important intention of installing Renewable Energy in India is to meet the energy demand of the fast-growing economy of India. The renewable energy sector of India achieves the fourth place in the striking global energy market. Also, India obtained the fourth rank in wind power and fifth rank in solar power installed capacity during the year 2018. Biomass is traditionally used primarily for cooking and heating, but the efficient use of biomass in modern energy forms is increasing gradually.
India is one of the countries with the highest amount of energy production from Renewable Energy. According to the Paris Accord on Climatic Change, India guaranteed that in 2030, 40% of power generation capacity shall be based on renewable resources. As of March 2020, the overall electricity generation capacity set up in India from Non-conventional energy sources is 35.86%. It contributes to 21.2% of the total consumption of electricity in India. As of April 2020, the total erected renewable energy capacity in India is about 87.26 GW as in Fig.1. Among the total capacity, the wind and solar constitute 37.74 GW and 34.81 GW respectively. The small hydropower and biomass comprised of 4.68 GW and 9.86 GW respectively. In 2019, India reached the third-largest position in the solar market of the world with an installed capacity of 7.3 GW. India grasped the fifth-largest hydropower producer by overtaking Japan with the installed capacity of 50GW.
The most plenteous energy in the world is the Solar Energy. Solar energy from the sun is converted into heat or electrical energy through Solar Thermal Collectors or Solar Photovoltaics. The solar thermal system otherwise called concentrated solar power employs solar power in different ways to produce electricity. The most used solar thermal is the solar collector with a mirror that concentrates the sunlight into a receiver that heats the liquid flowing through it. The steam produced from the heated liquid is used to generate electricity through a steam turbine. However, in solar PV systems, when the photons from sunlight strike the solar cell, it emits electrons the flow of which constitutes electricity. Solar energy can be used in a variety of applications such as the generation of electricity, water heating in domestic or industrial applications, cooling, and light. In the last 5 years, the solar energy installed capacity is increased by 11 times. As of March 2019, around 42 solar parks have been approved in almost 17 states. The fully operated solar parks are at Kurnool and Bhadla II. The largest solar park is under installation in Pavagada.
Wind energy constitutes one of the foremost renewable energy sources. The wind is called a Non-Conventional energy source because the wind will persistently be created as long as the sun shines on the earth. The wind is basically the movement of air. Due to the irregular heating of the surface of the earth by the sun the wind energy is formed. As the surface of the earth consists of various types of land and water, the rate of engrossing the sun’s radiant energy is dissimilar. Naturally, the land heats up more rapidly than the water on the coastal regions. Today, the Wind Turbines are mostly used to harness the wind and transform into electricity. The size and speed of the Wind Turbine determine the amount of electricity that can be generated from the Wind Turbine. The three major components of Wind turbines are blades, a tower, and a generator that works together to convert the wind energy into mechanical energy which in turn is fed as input to the generator to generate electricity. During the last four years, the setup capacity of wind energy has enlarged by 1.7 times.
The other type of renewable energy is Hydro Power where the energy possessed by water due to its motion is used for electricity generation. Here, the stored energy is converted into kinetic energy by initiating the flow of water between two points at different heights. It is the largest renewable energy resource used for generating electricity. The Hydropower plays an inevitable role in accomplishing India’s Renewable Energy plans in electricity generation. But, environmental and financial concerns play adversely. The kinetic energy from the water is converted into mechanical energy by the turbines and is then converted to electricity with the help of generators. The overall output of hydropower is about 90%-95%. In India, the projects under the capacity of 25 MW belong to the category of a small hydropower plant. India’s estimated hydropower potential is 1,45,320 MW capacity. The installed capacity at the end of February 2020 is 45,700MW.
Biomass is the use of organic material that arises from plants and animals to produce electricity. Chemical energy from the biomass is discharged as heat when biomass is burnt. The energy from biomass is free from fluctuations and no storage requirement as in the case of wind and solar. The biomass can be used directly or converted into liquid biofuels or biogas which can be used as fuels. Wood wastes, animal manures, agricultural wastes, food waste, and garbage are burned and converted into biofuels to generate electricity. The Ministry of New and Renewable energy has promoted a new scheme to support the biomass-based cogeneration in all sugar mills. Biomass contributes 18000MW of energy among total generated renewable energy in India.
In this article scenario of non-conventional energy in India has been reviewed. Because of the depletion of fossil fuels, the need for alternate energy becomes more important. To be environmentally safe, the energy sources must be with low environmental influence and low greenhouse gas emissions. India has gained the application of various renewable energy technologies to utilize in various sectors. Efficiency improvement based on continuous research, technological improvement, and suitable regulatory policy paves way for the increased renewable energy installation capacity in the future.
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