India falling behind on near-term renewables goal, says ReNew Energy Global

The world’s third biggest emitter of greenhouse gases has come under international pressure to set higher targets to reduce emissions
India may be one of the fastest-growing power markets, but it’s running behind in its goal for renewables capacity next year, according to one of the country’s biggest producers of clean electricity.

The country will have built 130 gigawatts (Gw) of renewables capacity including wind and solar by 2022, short of reaching the government’s target of 175 Gw, said Sumant Sinha, chairman of ReNew Energy Global, in an interview on Thursday. It will take another 12 to 18 months to reach that level, he said.

Still, there is a “fairly good chance” that the South Asian economy will reach its 2030 target to construct 450 Gw of capacity, Sinha said. Clean power initiatives will pick up the pace as some of India’s biggest energy companies join in and banks refuse to fund new coal plants, he said.

The world’s third biggest emitter of greenhouse gases has come under international pressure to set higher targets to reduce emissions. India has countered with ambitious plans to roll out clean energy, and the programme is likely to be the highlight of its negotiations at COP26 climate talks starting in Glasgow next week.

India recently reached 100 Gw of renewable power capacity, and is close to having 40 per cent of installed capacity run on non-fossil sources. Yet, obstacles including the pandemic, lack of enough transmission facilities and attempts by some provinces to renegotiate power purchase contracts have slowed progress.

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