Solar power grew most among all power generation sources in India in 2017 - and could develop even better if the government were to address uncertainties relating to proposed anti-dumping and safeguard duties, as well as the misclassification of solar modules at ports, according to consultancy Mercom. (Source: Mercom India Research)
- India generated 86% more solar power in 2017 compared to the 11.6 billion units (BU) generated in 2016
- In Q4/2017, it accounted for over 6.5 BU of total power generated in the country, thanks to better installation activity during that part of the year
- Overall, thermal power still accounts for about 80% of India’s power output
- Solar still accounted for only 1.67% of the total power generation output in the country in 2017
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India generated over 21.5 billion units (BU) of solar power in 2017, registering an increase of 86% compared to the 11.6 BU generated in the previous year. Referring to Central Electricity Authority (CEA) data, Mercom India Research reported that solar power accounted for over 6.5 BU of the total power produced in the country in Q4/2017. That’s an increase of over 1.2 BU generated by solar in Q3/2017.
India had a cumulative PV capacity of 17 GW at the end of September 2017 (see India’s Cumulative PV Capacity Exceeds 17 GW). According to Mercom, this number increased to 20 GW in the last quarter of 2017 (see India Crosses 20 GW PV Milestone). This increase in installations explains the improved generation statistics. In Q4/2017, solar power generation was up 80% compared to the 3.6 BU generated a year prior.
When looking at all generation sources, solar power showed the strongest growth. Compared to solar, wind power generation grew only 21%, followed by hydro with 6% and thermal with 3.7%. Despite this tremendous growth in generation, solar power accounted for only 1.67% of the country’s total power generation mix. Thermal power plants account for close to 80% of the country’s power output.
“India’s solar sector could shine even brighter if several lingering uncertainties about matters like the proposed anti-dumping duty, the proposed safeguard duty, and the misclassification of solar modules at ports are dealt with by government agencies immediately,” commented Mercom.