Gujarat, located on the western coast of India, shares its borders with Rajasthan, Maharashtra, and Madhya Pradesh. With Gandhinagar as its capital and Ahmedabad as its largest city, Gujarat is a state known for its vibrant economy and industrial development. In recent years, the state has made significant strides in the renewable energy sector, particularly in solar power generation.
As of 2020, Gujarat’s peak power requirement reached 18,000 MW, with a total installed power generation capacity of 30,500 MW. Notably, 37% of this capacity, amounting to 11,264 MW, is derived from renewable energy sources. The renewable energy sector in Gujarat includes 7,845 MW generated from wind power, 3,273 MW from solar energy, 81.6 MW from biomass, and 63.33 MW from mini-hydro power projects.
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Those interested in harnessing solar energy in Gujarat often wonder about the subsidies and support available. The Central Government, through the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), offers subsidies for solar installations. For grid-connected solar rooftop power plants, a subsidy of 30% of the benchmark cost is available. However, it is important to note that government institutions and Public Sector Units (PSUs) are not eligible for this subsidy. Instead, they may receive achievement-linked incentives or awards. Residential buildings, institutional buildings (such as schools and health institutions), and the social sector can benefit from the Capital Subsidy (CFA) scheme.
Installing solar power in Gujarat serves several objectives. First and foremost, it promotes green and clean power, reducing the state’s carbon emissions. Solar power also helps reduce dependence on fossil fuels, enhancing energy security. Additionally, it contributes to the cost reduction of renewable energy and aligns with the “Make in India” program by encouraging local manufacturing facilities. Furthermore, solar power installations spur investment, employment generation, and skill enhancement in the renewable energy sector, while also fostering research, development, and innovation.
Solar rooftop projects can be installed in various types of buildings, including residential, government, commercial, industrial, and others. Eligibility for setting up Solar Power Generating systems extends to companies, body corporates, associations, and artificial juridical persons, whether incorporated or not, in accordance with the Electricity Act-2003.
Regarding metering, the Central Electricity Authority mandates the use of bi-directional meters of the same accuracy class as the consumer’s meter existing before solar power generation installation. Alternatively, an ABT (Availability Based Tariff)-compliant meter can be used for Renewable Purchase Obligation (RPO) and Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) category obligations.
For those interested in solar subsidies and net metering processes in Gujarat, the Gujarat Energy Development Agency (GEDA) serves as a valuable resource. GEDA is a premier organization in India dedicated to renewable energy development and energy conservation. They provide information and guidance on solar subsidy schemes and the net metering process, helping individuals and entities navigate the procedures involved in harnessing solar energy.
In conclusion, Gujarat’s commitment to renewable energy, particularly solar power, has positioned the state as a frontrunner in India’s sustainable development journey. The availability of subsidies and support, coupled with the state’s favorable solar energy policies, has created opportunities for residential, commercial, and industrial entities to adopt solar power and contribute to a greener and more sustainable future. By leveraging solar energy, Gujarat continues to drive positive environmental impact, energy security, and economic growth in line with its vision for a clean and prosperous future.