Wind, solar energy to get big push under Modi-led NDA

The Narendra Modi government is likely to harness solar power and give a fillip to development of offshore wind energy so as to provide electricity to every household in the near future, industry officials said today.

Modi will be country's first energy literate Prime Minister and expanding clean power generation will be his administration's top energy-related priority, especially solar and wind energy, because it has the potential to create jobs and supply power to millions of scattered households not connected to the grid.

About 400 million people in India lack access to electricity, more than the combined population of the US and Canada.

Industry officials said the NDA government may come out with a separate offshore wind energy policy and allow companies to initially set up offshore wind farms up to 12 Nautical Miles from Coast as part of its overall plan to achieve energy security and bring down carbon emission.

The new government is also expected to reinstate accelerated depreciation for investments into wind energy projects and accord priority sector lending for the entire renewable energy segment to give a fillip to non-conventional energy resources.

Tulsi Tanti, Chairman Suzlon Group, said, "We believe the BJP-led government will provide an environment conducive for growth and investments, with major reforms in the infrastructure and renewable energy sector. This is important as India's economic environment will act as a catalyst in reviving the global economy."

Suzlon has already announced plans to enter offshore wind power generation in India in a big way. It has already successfully set up a number of offshore wind generation units globally with Germany's Alpha Ventus Project 60 kms from shore.

"Renewable energy is the only long-term sustainable solution and an answer to issues around global warming. Within this, the solar power specifically can address rural electrification challenge.

"Two key factors are cost effectiveness and maximising deployment -– policy changes supporting land acquisition, ease of finance and long-term PPAs would boost the renewable energy sector," said Sameer Gupta, Managing Director, Jakson Group.

The BJP's election manifesto promises a 'comprehensive energy policy' to harness oil, gas, hydro, ocean, wind, solar, coal and nuclear energy.

In Gujarat, where Narendar Modi was chief minister for 12 years, political appointees were ejected from state ventures and power utilities and made the companies autonomous and professionally run, helping them turn profitable.

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