India can add 23.7 GW of clean energy by 2026

India can add another 23.7 GW of capacity within the next five years provided necessary enabling policies, facilitative instruments, and the right institutional interventions are put in place, according to a new report.

The report, titled “Renewing wind growth to power the energy transition: India Wind Energy Market Outlook 2026”, was released by Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) and MEC Intelligence (MEC+) today.

Wind power constituted the majority of the renewable energy mix in India, with 37.7% of cumulative installed capacity, as of March 2022. However, the overall estimated potential dwarfs the current installed capacity, said the report. There is over 600 GW of onshore capacity at 120m hub height, with another 174 GW of fixed-bottom and floating offshore wind potential.

“These statistics demonstrate that there is a huge untapped wind energy potential that will be crucial for advancing the country’s clean energy transition,” the report added.

As per the report, the Covid pandemic and global supply chain challenges caused disruption. “However, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) took several measures at this time. For example, the ministry granted a blanket timeline extension, which pushed the 0.7 GW of delayed projects to 2022.”

“Between 2021 and until the release of this edition, 2.65 GW of the SECI awarded wind/solar hybrid (WSH) tenders and 3.5 GW of standalone wind projects were awarded. Unlike the previous years, both standalone and hybrid projects were oversubscribed, this reinstates the ever-growing prominent role of wind energy for decarbonization and resilience building in the grid system,” the report added.

Sidharth Jain, MD, MEC+ said “India’s track record has indicated that the wind installation market is a lumpy market. Considerable momentum has been built in the pipeline since 2017-2018, but inordinate delays in project execution have challenged the assumptions of developers. Despite these obstacles, wind’s role as a supplement to solar energy strengthened in 2021. Wind solar hybrid project PPAs have grown within corporate procurement and DISCOMs contracts, targeted toward meeting peak power needs. The export of bigger turbines and the entry of new suppliers into the local supply market have both reinforced India’s position as a global hub for wind equipment supplies. Given the trends, we are hopeful of the revitalization of demand for wind power towards 2026 in the country.”