Saturday, August 17, 2013

The surge gains strength

The Brazilian state of São Paulo — the economic and industrial heart of the country — is currently aiming to possess a total of at least 1 GW of solar energy capacity by the year 2020, a goal which is very achievable, according to a solar atlas of the region that was recently released by the state’s energy secretariat. The state of São Paulo possesses twice the maximum global solar irradiation of the solar powerhouse Germany.

SãoPaulo, which in addition to being the economic heart of the country is also the most populous state in Brazil, has a total solar power generation potential of 12 TWh per year in the areas with the absolute highest annual solar radiation, according to the new solar atlas. The areas in question total 732 square kilometers — 0.3% of the state’s total area of 248,209 square kilometers. It’s estimated that these areas could host at least 9,100 MW (9.1 GW) of installed capacity.

São Paulo is already well on its way to achieving its aforementioned goal of possessing 1 GW of solar energy capacity by 2020 — 207 MW of thermal solar capacity are already installed. The rest of the 1 GW target capacity will be split up thusly: a further 592 MW of thermal solar capacity, 50 MW of photovoltaic solar capacity, 50 MW of concentrated solar power, and 100 MW set aside for passive solar energy exploitation in the form of solar architecture projects.

Indian government announced a $7.9 billion investment to double its transmission capacity – designed to increase access to power from wind and solar projects. India’s installed solar energy has jumped from a mere 17 megawatts in 2010, when India’s National Solar Mission was announced, to over 1200 megawatts today.
The second phase of JNNSM programme envisages development of cumulative capacity of 1,000 MW for off-grid solar power and targets 15 million sq mt collector area. The targets include improved energy access in remote areas, heating or cooling applications that would encourage employment generation opportunities, replacement of diesel and kerosene as in Telecom Towers, solar cities and solar cookers and steam generating systems.

Not only do these clean energy projects increase India’s energy supply, they also create much needed jobs. As India’s economy grows and develops, its energy consumption likewise is increasing rapidly: it increased 64 percent from 2001-02 to 2011-12 and is projected to grow an additional 72 percent by 2021-22, according to the Indian Planning Commission. To support India’s burgeoning renewable energy ecosystem, NRDC and the Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW) are striving to bolster the case for clean energy by telling this story of job creation and economic benefits.

The surge should pick up likewise in all places that get good sunlight. 

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