In a bid to help India achieve its power generation capacity through cleaner, renewable energy sources, the World Bank, the government of India and Solar Energy Corporation of India Limited (SECI) have signed agreements to provide loans worth $200 million in the form of International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) loan, Clean Technology Fund (CTF) loan and CTF grant.
The IBRD loan, which is worth $150 million, has a grace period of five years and a maturity of 25 years, the CTF loan, which is worth $28 million, has a grace period of 10 years and a maturity of 40 years, and CTF grant is worth $22 million.
The agreement underscores India’s commitment to achieving 500 giga-watts (GW) of renewable energy by 2030 to address the challenges of climate change.
The project aims to address constraints in commercial investments in the renewable energy sector by increasing the confidence of the various stakeholders. The project will also help SECI increase market uptake by addressing the barriers to deploying new technologies at scale. Under this, the first solar subproject is being constructed by battery energy solar systems (BESS) in Rajnandgaon district of Chhattisgarh, whereas the second sub-project, which will have floating solar panels is ongoing at the Getalsud reservoir of Jharkhand.
India currently has an installed capacity of more than 409 gigawatt (GW), of which the renewable energy (non-hydro) share is almost 29% (119.5 GW). The project will accelerate India’s progress towards sustainable universal electricity access, which is a key milestone for achieving inclusive economic development objectives.
The project will also support SECI with human resource and business planning, project monitoring, procurement, financial and contract management, environmental and social safeguards, and financial management, among others.
Surbhi Goyal, senior energy specialist and World Bank’s task team leader for the project, said: “SECI, the Government of India’s nodal agency, is pivotal to pushing the frontiers in mainstreaming renewable energy within the country to accelerate its energy transitions journey. This engagement attempts to introduce nascent technologies in the renewable energy sector at a relatively larger scale.”
“The subprojects financed under this Project aim to displace fossil-fuel-based generation by positioning renewable energy to meet peak power demand, establish an ecosystem to attract private sector investments, and support institutional strengthening,” Goyal added.