ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Articles By Renewable Energy

Deep Renewables Penetration and Tariff Shocks

Using a simple scenario analysis based on the latest data on the finances of the distribution utilities and the 20th Electric Power Survey of India, we calculate the possible tariff impact of the addition of around 420 GW of variable renewable energy from 2020–21 to 2031–32. The cost of evacuation of renewable power and battery costs emerges as major factors. We recommend higher union government expenditure to incentivise the creation of transmission infrastructure to facilitate renewables absorption by utilities and the reduction of grid integration and battery deployment costs.

Impact of Political Regime and Ideology on Renewable Energy Installations in India

The Indian renewable energy sector has seen two ideological shifts post 2014: one, focus shifted greatly to solar, and two, increased focus to competitive bidding in policy design. The paper examines if regime change and political ideology have any influence on the “type” of renewable energy. No convincing evidence is found of either a changed political regime or differing ideology of union and state governments on the trajectory of renewable energy installations once we control for other variables.

Unlocking Fortune at the Bottom of India’s Gobar Pyramid

A 2014 International Labour Organization study claimed that India can create millions of rural jobs by raising the value of gobar (manure) from the present `0.15–`0.30 per kg wet weight to `1.50–`2.00 per kg. This would benefit millions of landless and marginal dairy farmers who make a meagre income from gobar. Biogas technology is the answer, but its reach in rural India is insignificant. India’s biogas programme needs to make a quantum leap through initiatives that pilot new business models for village-scale plants with the support of dairy cooperatives. It needs to maximise the energy as well as nutrient value that can be derived from gobar, overcome farmers’ loss aversion by monetising benefits and costs, and incentivise the installation of biogas plants and optimise their operating performance.

 

Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2020

The proposed Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2020 aims to reduce subsidies and push for privatisation, especially in the distribution segment of the power sector. Undertaking structural changes in a core sector at a time of crisis from the COVID-19 pandemic and its economic effects defies logic. The proposed amendments are not only anti-people, but they also fail to address the long-term crises in the sector and will only accelerate its deterioration. The central government must hold off on passing any hasty legislation on the subject and adopt a more scientific and less ideological approach to deal with the travails of the power sector.