Gujarat – emerging solar capital of India

Mr. Vinay Thadani
Gujarat - emerging solar capital of India

The Indian solar industry is moving ahead at full throttle towards achieving its target capacity of 450 GW worth of renewable energy by 2030. Globally, India ranks among the top four countries concerning total installations, surpassing many developed nations. India’s non-fossil fuel energy has grown by over 25% in seven years. Currently, solar accounts for around 7% of India’s electricity generation. However, to achieve its 2070 net-zero targets, India must utilize the enormous potential to generate clean energy, especially solar. The onset of 2023, especially the focus on the ‘green space’ in the Union Budget, has brought about a zeal in the solar energy sector, making it a promising year of growth and development.

Gujarat has been at the forefront of solar energy manufacturing and adoption. With the special allocation in the Union Budget, home-grown solar manufacturing companies are looking forward to brighter avenues. Mr. Vinay Thadani from Grew Energy Private Limited said, “At Grew, we aim to narrow down the huge gap in demand and supply of solar PV modules and other components by reducing dependence on imports. With an objective to aid ‘further and faster’ transition to renewable energy in India, we are coming up with a solar module manufacturing facility in Rajasthan with an initial production of 1 Gigawatt to commence by June this year. Over four years, the facility will catalyse a manufacturing capacity of 4 GW PV Modules, 3 GW PV cells, and a complete ecosystem. Additionally, Floatovoltaics is also something that interests us, and Grew plans to come up with floating solar solutions that are already in the pipeline. We hope to aid a ‘further and faster’ transition to renewable energy in India by accelerating consistent growth determined by sustainability, reliability, and responsibility.”

The Central Electricity Authority (CEA) has predicted that renewable energy will take over coal by 2025. Many industries are turning to renewable energy to meet their ever-growing energy demand for environmental and monetary purposes. Gujarat is one state where the renewable energy industry is thriving, with many residential and industrial units turning to solar energy to meet their electricity requirements. Renewable energy contributes almost 37% to Gujarat’s total energy capacity. The state contributes 13% to India’s renewable portfolio. As of June 30, 2022, Gujarat is the second-most solar-developed state with a total installed capacity of 7,806.80 MWac (Mega-Watt, Alternating Current).

Factors that set Gujarat apart when it comes to the adoption of solar energy, especially rooftop installation, are:

• Adequate supply of vendors 

• Adequate demand through incentivization 

• Digitization 

• Timely disbursal of subsidies

Such a high and ever-growing rate of solar energy adoption at the micro and macro level, as well as various government schemes and subsidies, will surely accelerate the domestic solar industry’s growth. Additionally, the IEA (International Energy Agency) report, while lauding Gujarat’s “on-the-ground implementation of policies,” reported that Gujarat had installed over one-third of rooftop PV systems in 2022. Data from JMK Research estimated that by FY2023, 65% of all residential solar rooftops will be in Gujarat.