Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) has set a target of generation of 10,000 mw of power through solar energy by the year 2017. The minister for new and renewable energy Farooq Abdullah said that the phase I of the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM) has been very successful wherein 1685 MW of solar power was generated as against the target of 11,000 MW.
Abdullah said that large tracks of land have been identified in Rajasthan, Kargil and Ladakh which have immense potential of generation of solar power. He though cited that the challenge was starting a transmission line in the areas of Kargil and Ladakh so that power could be evacuated to the other parts of the country. He also said that there should be a lot of focus on breakthrough in new research to ensure storage of solar energy for greater time period.
Ratan P.Watal, secretary, MNRE, highlighted importance of development of solar power for meeting the solar requirements of around 40% of the population which lacked access to energy resources. Even providing one unit of power to such houses throughout the year would in itself need a generation of 15,000 MW of solar power.
JNNSM was launched in 2010 with an ambitious target of deploying 20,000 mw of grid connected solar power by 2022. Solar mission has targeted a capacity of grid connected solar power generation of 1000 mw within three years of its launch and to reach installed power capacity of 10,000 mw by the year 2017. The target of 20,000 mw for 2022, which if successful, could lead to conditions of grid-competitive solar power.