Europe Invests in Huge Solar Power Plant Capacity in India
Goal is to install a capacity of 20,000 MW in solar power plants by 2020
The Asian Development Bank and the European Investment Bank are investing in large solar power plants in India in hopes to popularize solar energy around the region. The ADB has stated it's rightfully ambitious about India's National Solar Mission projects, and is also receiving funding from Germany's KWF, and the US Import-Export Bank.
The National Solar Mission's goal for India is to install a capacity of 20,000 MW in solar power plants by 2022. Currently, India's install capacity for solar power plants stands at only 14 MW.
To drastically increase install capacity, the Indian government announced that construction of two major solar power plants will begin in Gujarat and Rajasthan. Both states have substantially high resources of solar radiation, as well as massive areas of free land. Rajasthan has set aside 8,000 hectare for 3,000 MW of solar power within the regions of their large Thar desert, while Gujarat will utilize 2,500 hectare for 1,000 MW of solar power in their western wastelands. Construction is expected to officially begin during the second phase of India's National Solar Mission, after 2013.
The ADB is also already supporting developers working on the first phase of the project, whose goals are to install 1,100 MW of solar power by 2013. 50% of the first phase will be supported by loan guarantees, while 350 MW will be supported by the ADB.
The ADB also confirms that it will be working with several ministries within the Indian government in an attempt to make solar power plants commercially viable; they plan to accomplish this goal by thoroughly educating India's government and public about the energy efficiency of solar power plants. The Asian Development Bank and it's collaborators will be providing capital grants, covering the major difference in cost between solar power and conventional sources of power.