Renewables Integration in India 2021 : NITI Ayog Report – UPSC GS3

The International Energy Agency(IEA) in association with NITI Aayog has released a report titled “Renewables Integration in India 2021”.
Renewables Integration in India 2021 Report:
  • India’s Demand For Energy:
    • India is the third largest energy-consuming country in the world.
    • India has made significant progress towards its universal electrification target for residential users.  100 million people gained electricity access in 2018 alone.
    • Per capita electricity consumption across the 28 Indian states and eight union territories is still around a third of the world average and is expected to continue increasing.
  • Renewable Energy Penetration in India:
    • Renewable energy penetration is highly variable by the state in India.
    • The share of solar and wind in India’s ten renewables-rich states (Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, Punjab, and Kerala) is significantly higher than the national average of 8.2%.
    • Solar and wind account for around 29% of annual electricity generation in Karnataka, 20% in Rajasthan, 18% in Tamil Nadu, and 14% in Gujarat.
  • Future Prospects of Renewable Energy:
    • The report highlights that India’s power system can efficiently integrate renewables (175 GW by 2022 and 450 GW by 2030).
    • But this would require identification of resources, proper planning, policy and institutional support, energy storage, and advanced technology initiatives.
What the Indian States should do?
Indian states need to employ a wide range of flexible options, such as:
  • Demand response
  • More flexible operation of coal-based power plants
  • Grid improvements to transition to cleaner electricity systems.
  • Larger shares of renewables can be better managed by shifting the time of use in agriculture.
  • Time of Use(ToU) tariffs will be an effective tool to incentivise demand-side management and encourage flexible consumption.