Photon News — India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has published a list providing details on the 25 »Ultra Mega Solar Power Projects« that will be developed across the country over the next five years. These projects will have a combined capacity of 22.1 GW and will have each a capacity of over 500 MW.

The largest project will have a capacity of 7.5 GW and will be developed in the state of Jammu & Kashmir. The second largest project will have a capacity of 2.5 GW and will be built in Andhra Pradesh, while the state of Rajasthan will host 3 projects of 1 GW each and another 700 MW project.

The states of Madhya Pradesh and Punjab will both host two giant solar projects with a capacity of each 750 MW and 1 GW, respectively.

The remaining states will all host a single giant PV project: Odisha (1 GW), Telangana (1 GW), Karnataka (1 GW), Gujarat (750 MW), Uttar Pradesh (600 MW) and Tamil Nadu (500 MW). India’s Minister of state for Power, Coal & New and Renewable Energy Piyush Goyal said that the »cost for development« of these giant projects will be of 0.95 crore INR (approximately $153,000) per MW. Developers will be selected through a bidding process managed by India’s central government.

The country’s Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (CERC) has already established that the capital cost of these projects can not exceed 6.91 crore INR per MW.

In September, MNRE published the draft scheme for the development of these projects. The proposed scheme was one of several initiatives aimed at providing impetus to the country’s solar program, the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM), which has had a few setbacks over the last few years.

MNRE believes that PV projects between 500 MW and 1 GW have the potential to reduce the cost of deploying PV and would be an effective solution for reducing India’s chronic energy shortage.

The projects would be developed in collaboration with state governments, with the implementation agency being the Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI), the central government agency overseeing the implementation of the JNNSM. In a separate development, MNRE revealed that India’s cumulative installed PV capacity has reached 2,970.6 MW to date.

The Indian states with the largest solar capacity are Gujarat (919.0 MW), Rajasthan (835.5 MW), Madhya Pradesh (353.5 MW), Maharashtra (286.9 MW) and Andhra Pradesh (234.8 MW).

Derick Lila
Derick is a Clark University graduate—and Fulbright alumni with a Master's Degree in Environmental Science, and Policy. He has over a decade of solar industry research, marketing, and content strategy experience.

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