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The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry

Meeting between Narendra Modi and Donald Trump not likely to lead to any nuclear trade deal with India

PM Modi-Trump talks: Civil nuclear deal to figure, no pact on reactors,Time of India.| Jun 25, 2017, 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • A pact between the NPCIL and Westinghouse to build six power reactors in Andhra Pradesh is unlikely to be signed.
  • The progress on the 2008 civil nuclear deal is likely to be discussed during the meeting.
  • During his visit to the US on June 25-26, Modi is slated to meet Donald Trump.
NEW DELHI: The Indo-US civil nuclear deal is expected to figure during talks between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Donald Trump on Monday, but a pact between the NPCIL and Westinghouse to build six power reactors in Andhra Pradesh is unlikely to be signed.
A host of strategic issues are expected to be discussed during the parleys between the leaders of the world’s two largest democracies,….
They said a financial turmoil in Westinghouse and absence of a functional reference atomic plant were the main impediments behind the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited’s (NPCIL) unwillingness to sign the agreement with the American nuclear giant.

According to a joint statement by Modi and the then US president Barack Obama in 2015, both the sides had resolved to work towards “finalising the contractual agreement by June 2017”.

However, a lot of water has flown under the bridge since then.

Westinghouse, which was acquired by Japanese conglomerate Toshiba in 2007, filed for bankruptcy in March.

Apprehending uncertainty, the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) and the NPCIL are unwilling to go ahead with any agreement with the beleaguered company till it comes out of the financial turmoil……http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/pm-modi-trump-talks-civil-nuclear-deal-to-figure-no-pact-on-reactors/articleshow/59311335.cms

June 26, 2017 Posted by | India, politics international, USA | Leave a comment

37 sites close, as world’s largest coal company winds down

The World’s Largest Coal Mining Company Is Closing 37 Sites https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/kzqdme/the-worlds-largest-coal-mining-company-is-closing-37-sites,ANKITA RAO, Jun 23 2017,

As solar energy becomes cheaper than coal, India’s growth will depend on renewables.

Coal India—a government-back coal company–is reportedly closing 37 of its “unviable” mines in the next year to cut back on losses.

India is primed for an energy revolution. The country’s ongoing economic growth has been powered by fossil fuels in the past, making it one of the top five largest energy consumers in the world. But it has also invested heavily in renewables, and the cost of solar power is now cheaper than ever. In some instances, villages in India have avoided coal-powered electricity altogether, and “leapfrogged” straight to solar power.

Partly because of this shift, Coal India, which produced 554.13 million tonnes of coal in the 2016-2017 fiscal year (for comparison, the largest company in the US produced about 175 million in 2015) saw demand dip in recent months. This is not the first sign that coal is no longer the most economic option for emerging economies like India and China. Earlier this year, the heavily industrial state of Gujarat cancelled its proposed coal power plants. And a few weeks ago The Hindu reported that Coal India had identified another 65 mines in losses.

ndia’s energy situation is changing so fast that even expert predictions about its switch to renewables are wildly off: A study from last year claimed India would be building more than 300 coal plants in the next 10 years, but experts said the data was already outdated by the time the report was published, and that India would be moving toward renewables instead.

We are collectively moving away from fossil fuels“For the first time, solar is cheaper than coal in India and the implications this has for transforming global energy markets are profound,” said Tim Buckley, Director of the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) in a statement. The decline of Coal India, which produces 80 percent of the country’s domestic coal output, is more evidence that we are collectively moving away from fossil fuels as cleaner, renewable technologies become more widely available. This reality is important to grasp in every country where coal used to be king. Even as Donald Trump promises coal jobs, let’s remember that those jobs don’t are unlikely to come back.

“One of the most popular mines today employs [a couple hundred people] who are doing the work that used to be done by thousands,” Jerome Scott, a left-leaning activist with the League of Revolutionaries for a New America, said at the Left Forum earlier this month in Manhattan. “That’s the fundamental contradiction within capitalism—it’s being disrupted because they’re able to hire fewer and fewer workers.”

And for countries like India, where companies like Coal India employ more than 300,000 people, training people to work in more viable energy markets will be increasingly important to provide sustainable livelihoods. Luckily, it looks like the solar industry will have some job openings.

June 26, 2017 Posted by | business and costs, climate change, India | Leave a comment

Low morale in India’s nuclear industry: exodus of scientists

Scientists’ exodus hits Bhabha Atomic Research Centre http://www.newindianexpress.com/thesundaystandard/2017/jun/24/scientists-exodus-hits-bhabha-atomic-research-centre-1620535.html, By Richa Sharma  24th June 2017 NEW DELHI: The Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), which hogged the limelight for unnatural death of nuclear scientists in the past few years, is faced with a different challenge now: Attrition. As many as 85 scientists have left the country’s top nuclear research facility in the last five years, according to an RTI reply.

The reason ranges from lack of professional working environment to harassment. Early this year, a BARC scientific officer went missing after sending an email to her family in which she cited wok pressure and mental harassment by her senior. She, however, returned home a week later.
This was not the first time when such allegations were made. In 2015, a group of BARC scientists wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, alleging harassment and victimisation by their seniors and sought his intervention.

Things seem to have not improved as the RTI query revealed that 85 scientists and technical officers— mostly in their early or mid level—have quit between 2012 and 2016. The centre did not give any reason for the same.
The number of deaths in the nuclear research facility presents a horrific story as 73 suicides, including by many scientists, were reported between 1995 and 2016. Many BARC scientists were also found dead in mysterious conditions and murdered.

According to the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), adequate arrangements are in place at workplace and departmental residential township for security of scientists.
“Unnatural death of scientists/employees of DAE are always being accorded due importance and this office monitors sensitive cases of death from time to time in consultation with Units, Intelligence Bureau, local police,” said the DAE.

June 26, 2017 Posted by | employment, India | Leave a comment

India gives up on importing Western nuclear reactors, to save face, will build its own.

India’s inward nuclear turn, ECONOMIC TIMES,  JUN 22, 2017, By Brahma Chellaney Just as Japan’s Diet has ratified the civil nuclear agreement with New Delhi, India has decided to build 10 nuclear power reactors of indigenous design in what is the largest such construction decision in the world since the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster. India’s turn to a “fully home-grown initiative“ reflects the continuing problems in implementing the 2005 Indo-US nuclear deal.

June 23, 2017 Posted by | India, politics | Leave a comment

Russia pushing for selling nuclear reactors to India, Bangladesh, China

Rosatom may start building new nuclear power plants in India and Bangladesh http://tass.com/economy/952448   June 20, MOSCOW, Rosatom plans to initiate main activities for construction of the second stage of Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) in India, start building Ruppur NPP in Bangladesh ad commission power units at Tianwan NPP in China and two NPPs in Russia, First Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Russian nuclear corporation Rosatom Kirill Komarov said on Tuesday.

“We have serious ambitious plans on new starts this year because the third unit of Tianwan [NPP] in China and the fourth unit of Rostov NPP in Russia should start this year. We endeavor to start the first unit of Leningrad NPP-2 this year,” Komarov said. “We expect concreting start for the third and the fourth units of Kudankulam NPP in India this summer. We also expect concreting start on Ruppur site in Bangladesh, where we are building a two-unit NPP,” he added.

Rosatom has many plans for projects in Europe during this year, Komarov said.

Rosatom has reached agreements on construction of 34 power units across the globe to date.

June 21, 2017 Posted by | ASIA, India, marketing, Russia | 2 Comments

India joins the renewable energy revolution, accelerates targets

Two days after President Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the Paris climate accord, Modi and Macron pledged to achieve emissions reductions beyond their nations’ commitments.
http://reneweconomy.com.au/india-joins-renewable-energy-revolution-accelerates-targets-13206/

June 16, 2017 Posted by | India, renewable | Leave a comment

American corporations hope to use Indian insurance companies, for nuclear build in India

GE, Westinghouse keen to take nuclear insurance from Rs 1,500-crore pool BY SHILPY SINHA, ET BUREAU JUN 12, 2017 MUMBAI:After years of stonewalling, India is poised to open up its nuclear liability cover to equipment suppliers, with GE and Westinghouse showing interest in taking insurance from the pool.

June 12, 2017 Posted by | business and costs, India, USA | Leave a comment

The high cost of Units 5, 6 at Kudankulam Nuclear power – most of it owed to Russia

Units 5, 6 at Kudankulam Nuclear power plant to cost Rs 50,000 crore: The New Indian Express,  NPCIL 2 June 17 ST. PETERSBURG: The construction of the fifth and sixth units of India’s largest nuclear power plant in Tamil Nadu will cost about Rs 50,000 crore with half of the amount being funded by Russia as loan.

The project will take seven years to start generating electricity, Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL) Chairman and Managing Director S K Sharma told PTI here.

India and Russia yesterday signed an agreement for the two new reactors for the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP) on the sidelines of the annual summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“The entire project will cost about Rs 50,000 crore. The first unit will be commissioned in 66 months and the second six months thereafter,” Sharma said.

Atomstroyexport, a unit of Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom, will build the reactors.

“The project will be funded in 70:30 debt-equity ratio (70 per cent debt, 30 per cent equity),” he said.

The Russian government will lend India USD 4.2 billion to help cover the construction cost……http://www.newindianexpress.com/states/tamil-nadu/2017/jun/02/units-5-6-at-kudankulam-nuclear-power-plant-to-cost-rs-50000-crore-npcil-1612150.html

June 5, 2017 Posted by | business and costs, India, politics international | Leave a comment

India’s growing stash of nuclear weapons

India’s nuclear-weapon inventory set to increase: Report http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/india-s-nuclear-weapon-inventory-set-to-increase-report/story-nmZt1ftciL78AuB73xlRBM.htmlThe IISS report stated that India’s base of long range nuclear missiles and nuclear submarines is set to grow, as a defence measure against China. Jun 02, 2017 India’s nuclear-weapons inventory is expected to expand in both quantity and quality as the country is aiming to build an “adequate deterrent capacity” against China, according to a new report.

The report on Asia Pacific Regional Security Assessment for 2017 released by the International Institute of Strategic Studies at the ShangriLa Dialogue here today.

“Much of this will be driven by the need to build an adequate deterrent capacity against China,” the report said.

“Analysts broadly agree that India holds around 100-120 nuclear warheads in its inventory, half of which are mounted on ballistic missiles,” said the US-linked IISS report.

Currently, none of India’s deployed surface-to-surface missiles has the range to cover all of China unless deployed close to the Sino-Indian border, it said.

However, India has at least two longer-range missiles under development, including the Agri-IV intermediate-range ballistic missile and the Agni-V intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), the report said.

A developmental ICBM dubbed Agni-VI with a planned range somewhere between 6,000 and 10,000 km was reported in local news media in 2013, it pointed out.

However, the status of existence of this project is unclear, added the report.

New Delhi is also developing a submarine-based nuclear force, the report said. Its first nuclear-powered ballistic-missile submarine, the Arihant, began sea trial in 2014 and was reportedly commissioned in August 2016, it said.

Of the nuclear-capable missiles, various reports suggest the submarine might carry, the 700-km range K-15 cannot hit mainland China from the Bay of Bengal, while the K-4 may be able to target most of China if its reported 3,500-km range is accurate.

India is reportedly building four more submarines and will probably seek to develop longer-range missiles for them, said the report.

The Shangri-La Dialogue, an annual gathering of defence ministers, armed forces chiefs, military strategists an experts began this evening at Singapore’s Shangri-La hotel.

It will be hearing speakers on various defence issues and security strategies tomorrow and ends at noon on Sunday.

June 3, 2017 Posted by | India, weapons and war | Leave a comment

India going into debt to Russia, for expanded Kudankulam nuclear plant ?

Russia signs deal to expand India’s Kudankulam nuclear plant https://uk.reuters.com/article/russia-economic-forum-india-nuclear-idUKL8N1IY5KR Russia signed an agreement with the Indian government on Thursday to build two new reactors for the Kudankulam nuclear power station in Tamil Nadu and said it would loan India $4.2 billion to help fund construction.

President Vladimir Putin says Russia is ready to build a dozen nuclear reactors in India over the next 20 years to back Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s growth strategy for Asia’s third-largest economy, which continues to suffer chronic power shortages.

The agreement to build reactors 5 and 6 at Kudankulam was signed in St Petersburg during a meeting between Putin and Modi at an economic forum. It should help cement already close ties between the two countries.

Atomstroyexport, a unit of Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom, will carry out the work, Kremlin documents seen by Reuters showed.

Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov told reporters the Russian government was lending India $4.2 billion from next year for a 10-year period to help cover construction costs.

Separately, in a joint declaration, the two countries said they noted the “wider use of natural gas” which they hailed as an economically efficient and environmentally friendly fuel that would help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help them fulfil the terms of the Paris climate change accord. (Reporting by Denis Pinchuk; Writing by Vladimir Soldatkin/Andrew Osborn; Editing by Alexander Winning)

June 2, 2017 Posted by | India, marketing of nuclear, politics international, Russia | Leave a comment

A victory for Indian farmers, as nuclear power proposal shifted from coastal district of Gujarat

Gujarat’s Mithivirdi nuclear plant to be shifted to AP http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/economy/policy/gujarats-mithivirdi-nuclear-plant-to-be-shifted-to-ap/article9717922.ece RUTAM VORA, Thanks to farmers’ protest, MoEF asks Green Tribunal to shift project site AHMEDABAD, JUNE 1:  

A decade-long legal battle to save their fertile land from being used for the country’s largest nuclear power plant ended in a victory for farmers from Saurashtra’s Bhavnagar district.

The Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) recently informed the National Green Tribunal (NGT) to shift the proposed 6,000 megaWatt (MW) nuclear plant — the first under the Indo-US civil nuclear pact of 2008 — from the coastal district of Gujarat to Kavvada in Andhra Pradesh “on account of delay in land acquisition at Chhaya-Mithivirdi site”.

The plant was to be set up by state-owned Nuclear Power Corporation of India Ltd (NPCIL) with technical support from Toshiba Corp’s Westinghouse Electric Company (WEC), which will build six nuclear reactors at the new site.

On May 18, MoEF said that in view of shifting of the said project the proposal for environment clearance (EC) before it has been delisted.

The villagers had approached NGT on March 3, 2015, challenging the coastal regulatory zone (CRZ) clearance given to NPCIL for the project. NGT’s Western Zone Bench, comprising Justice UD Salvi and Ranjan Chatterjee as expert member, disposed of the petition post the MoEF submission regarding shifting the site for the project.

India has planned to increase its nuclear power generation capacity from the existing 6,780 MW to 63,000 MW by 2032.

It is learnt that farmers in Andhra Pradesh have agreed to give away their lands for Westinghouse Electric’s AP-1000 pressurised water reactors. The project will initially require about 800 hectares of land in the eastern coastal district of Srikakulam.

In Gujarat’s Mithivirdi, however, farmers are celebrating. “A get-together has been planned on June 2 to celebrate the victory. The project would have directly affected about 340 farmer families and about 2,000 people indirectly associated with farm-related activities,” said Shaktisinh Gohi, one of the petitioners.

Gohil stated that NPCIL wanted about 777 hectares of land for the project from three to four villages around Mithivirdi. On March 5, 2013, before the company was granted CRZ clearance for the site, there were about 7,000 villagers who staged a walk-out from the Environmental Public Hearing as a mark of protest. Farmer leaders have been “sensitising” people about the risks of a nuclear reactor in the vicinity by distributing materials and showcasing films of the nuclear disasters in parts of the world.

“Our protests and arguments were backed by academic and scientific facts. We fought a very well-organised battle to get rid of this project. ,” said Rohit Prajapati, another petitioner.

June 2, 2017 Posted by | India, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

As solar costs plunge, India rethinks coal projects

Cheaper Solar in India Prompts Rethink for Coal Projects, Bloomberg, by  Anindya Upadhyay and Rajesh Kumar Singh June 1, 2017, 

  • Power from solar panels now half the cost of a new coal plant
  • Shift in electricity economics helps Modi’s goal on pollution

India’s coal-power plant developers are growing more pessimistic about their projects after a plunge in the cost of electricity from solar panels improved the economics of renewable energy.

After a string of federal auctions, solar is suddenly the cheapest source of electricity in India. That’s darkening the outlook for the coal-fired power industry as projects struggle to find customers or face cancellation amid a glut of capacity.

“The crashing solar tariffs are creating a mental block for distribution companies and holding them back from signing long-term purchase agreements with conventional power producers,” said T. Adi Babu, chief operating officer for finance at Lanco Infratech Ltd., an Indian power producer. “A couple of years back, when people talked of solar reaching grid parity, people were skeptical. Now the solar tariffs have gone well below that. It is definitely making conventional players sit up and take notice.”……

evidence of a shift away from coal is gathering by the day.

  • State-run NTPC Ltd., India’s largest power producer, along with RattanIndia Power Ltd. are considering installing solar panels over land initially intended for thermal projects.
  • NTPC said in February it’s aiming to have 30 percent of its capacity come from non-fossil fuel by 2032
  • The Indian subsidiary of Hong Kong-listed CLP Holdings Ltd., which owns both coal and renewable projects, is debating whether to participate in another round of conventional projects. “A transition from coal to solar is a generic direction that all utilities are taking. We are an early mover into the renewables space so our journey continues,” Mahesh Makhija, business-development director for renewables, said in a phone interview.
  • The government of the sunny state of Rajasthan expects more conventional power to be replaced by clean energy as higher renewable purchase targets are fulfilled. “At the rate the renewable power tariffs are decreasing, the time is not far when renewable power will start replacing costlier conventional power,” Sanjay Malhotra, principal secretary for energy in the Rajasthan government, said by phone.

Solar is now as much as 50 percent cheaper than new coal power, according to solar research firm Bridge to India.

“That’s why we have seen many new coal power tenders being suspended or canceled in the last three months,” said Vinay Rustagi, managing director at Bridge to India…….

renewables are expanding quickly in India. Solar capacity has surged fourfold since December 2014 to about 12 gigawatts, while wind farms now provide 32 gigawatts, up from 22.5 gigawatts over the same period. Modi is seeking an additional 88 gigawatts of solar and 28 gigawatts more of wind by 2022. And those projects are crowding coal out of the power market…….https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-06-01/cheaper-solar-in-india-prompts-rethink-for-more-coal-projects

June 2, 2017 Posted by | business and costs, India, renewable | Leave a comment

India’s Nuclear Weapons

This Is Why the World Should Fear India’s Nuclear Weapons, National Interest, Kyle Mizokami, 28 May 17, India, the world’s most populous democracy, occupies a unique strategic position flanked by powerful adversaries. As a result, its 1.3 billion people are guarded by an arsenal of approximately one hundred nuclear weapons deployed on land, at sea and in the air. Despite its status as a Cold War holdout, the country was forced to develop its own nuclear weapons…….

Today India is estimated to have at least 520 kilograms of plutonium, enough for, according to the Arms Control Association, “between 100 and 120 nuclear devices.” New Delhi describes this a “credible minimum deterrent” against neighboring nuclear powers China and Pakistan. By comparison, China—which must also contend with nuclear rival the United States—has enough fissile material for between 200 and 250 devices. Pakistan is thought to have an arsenal of 110 to 130 devices. India has a firm No First Use policy with regards to nuclear weapons, vowing to never be the first to use them in any conflict and only use them to retaliate in kind.

As a result India has built its own “triad” of land, sea and air forces, all equipped with nuclear weapons. The first leg to develop was likely tactical nuclear devices for strike aircraft of the Indian Air Force. Today, India possesses more than two hundred Su-30MK1 twin-engine fighters, sixty-nine MiG-29s and fifty-one Mirage 2000 fighters. It is likely at least some of these aircraft have been modified and trained to carry nuclear gravity bombs to their targets.

The land-based missile leg of the triad consists of Prithvi tactical ballistic missiles. First produced in the late 1990s, Prithvi initially had a range of just ninety-three miles, but future versions increased their range to 372 miles. Despite this, Prithvi is still firmly a tactical weapon, while the Agni I-V series of missiles, with ranges from 434 to 4,970 miles, are strategic weapons with the ability to hit foreign capitals—as well as all of China.

The third leg of the triad is new, consisting of nuclear ballistic-missile submarines (SSBNs) of the Arihant class. Four submarines are planned, each with the ability to carry twelve K-15 Sagarika (“Oceanic”) short-range ballistic missiles with maximum range of 434 miles, or K-4 medium-range ballistic missiles with a 2,174 mile range. Using the Bay of Bengal as a bastion and protected by assets such as India’s carrier INS Vikramaditya, the Arihant SSBNs can just barely reach Beijing.

India’s nuclear buildup has been relatively responsible, and the country’s No First Use policy should act to slow escalation of any conventional conflict into a nuclear one. As long as India’s nuclear deterrent remains credible, it should cause rational adversaries to think twice before edging to the nuclear threshold. Still, the country’s volatile relationship with Pakistan, which has no such policy, as well as its “Cold Start” blitzkrieg plan of action against its neighbor, means nuclear war cannot be ruled out.

 Kyle Mizokami is a defense and national-security writer based in San Francisco who has appeared in the Diplomat, Foreign Policy, War is Boring and the Daily Beast. In 2009 he cofounded the defense and security blog Japan Security Watch. You can follow him on Twitter: @KyleMizokamihttp://nationalinterest.org/blog/the-buzz/why-the-world-should-fear-indias-nuclear-weapons-20869

May 29, 2017 Posted by | India, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Energy tide turning in India, with cheaper renewables, and coal losing favour

Will India Ever Need Another Coal Plant?, The country’s energy infrastructure is changing rapidly as solar prices plummet. CityLab.com , KRUTIKA PATHI@krutikapathi03, May 25, 2017

“…..over the last five months, the price of renewable energy has plummeted so low that analysts have hailed it as both “record-breaking” and “unsustainable” in the same breath. In fact, the pace of change in the country’s energy infrastructure has been so swift that even researchers are scrambling to keep a steady pulse on a constantly developing beat.

As China slowly cut down on its own coal infrastructure, the International Energy Agency in 2015 projected India to be the next coal center in the near future. It stated that “half of the net increase in coal-fired generation capacity worldwide [through 2040] occurs in India.” Nearly a year later, in July 2016, the nonprofit CoalSwarm put out a report that found 370 proposals for coal plants in the works across the country.

The findings revealed a pretty explosive conclusion: that India’s outsized plans for coal energy would wipe out climate goals set out in the Paris Agreement. Merely a few months after the report, the researchers at CoalSwarm were surprised by a new twist.

In December 2016, the Central Authority of India (CAI) laid out an electricity plan that said no new coal plants, beyond those already under construction, are needed for at least the next decade. The CAI also put forth new renewable energy goals—a production of 275 gigawatts (GW) generated from solar, wind, and hydro by 2027.

This means that the majority of the plants that CoalSwarm tracked are now going to be shelved. It’s also a show of India’s push towards reforming its energy infrastructure: the country added more renewable power than thermal in the 2016 fiscal year.“It was hard to keep up,” says Christine Shearer, a senior researcher at CoalSwarm and lead author of the report. “The country is supposed to be at the heart of coal plant growth, but it’s interesting to see the tide go against what we often hear about China and India—that they’re going to keep building coal plants—when actually, they’re both stalling production.”…..

As prospects for India’s coal sector are falling, so is the price of renewable energy. In turn, the country’s future outlook, if all goes accordingly, is pretty good news for the planet. India first set a record-low price in February this year when a kilowatt-hour of solar energy was selling at Rs. 2.97 ($0.046 USD). This month, the country hit another record low—the price of solar dropped 12 percent further, currently selling at Rs. 2.62 ($0.041 USD) per kilowatt-hour. “To spell it out, new solar is 15 percent cheaper than existing domestic coal. No one, anywhere in the world, was expecting solar to get that cheap for at least a decade,” Buckley says, “and India just got there this year.” It’s a marked shift for India—which, in a matter of months, went from potentially thwarting global climate goals to possibly saving them.

The news of falling solar prices in India, and the country’s recent (but significant) efforts to divest from coal as the fundamental energy source, stands in contrast to the current scenario in the U.S. Analysts fear that President Trump’s “America First Energy Plan” will put the country behind China and India in the push to reinvigorate renewable solutions. “What gives me hope is that at a time when Trump is busy trying to destroy the Paris Agreement, the two most important countries in the world for the agreement are China and India,” says Buckley.

According to a study released last week by the Climate Action Tracker, India and China are on pace to “overachieve” their climate goals by 2030. ……

Solutions like off-grid solar panels are one kind of sustainable technology that could address the distribution problem, says Harish Hande, co-founder of SELCO, an enterprise that introduced off-grid solar energy in the Siddhi community in 2010. Within a year, 100 homes in the area were connected to power in the Western Ghats region. SELCO has been nationally awarded for its energy work in under-served households and areas—but, as Hande points out, a long-standing solution has to go beyond the mere mechanics of the supply chain. “It’s much larger than providing electricity,” he says, “and there have to be enough public-private partnerships that cross over education, health, and the bigger ecosystem for sustainable energy services to become more accessible.”https://www.citylab.com/tech/2017/05/will-india-ever-need-another-coal-plant/528111/

May 27, 2017 Posted by | ENERGY, India | 2 Comments

India’s fast growth in renewable energy

FT 23rd May 2017, Until recently, the answer was overwhelmingly coal, which accounts for about 60 per cent of Indian power generation. Coal capacity has almost tripled in the past decade to 192GW and a further 65GW is under construction.

The fastest growth, however, is coming from renewables. Significant amounts of hydro and wind generation have already pushed the share of green energy to about 30 per cent. This is now being supplemented by rapid expansion in solar power. A landmark was reached this May when an auction to supply 500MW of new solar capacity at a 10,000 hectare facility on the edge of the Thar desert secured a record low price of Rs2.44 ($0.04) per kilowatt-hour — down two-thirds from three years ago and, for the first time, cheaper than coal-fired generation.

Plummeting costs have spurred forecasts that Indian solar capacity could double this year to 18GW, which would be more than six times greater than when Mr Modi’s government took power three years ago…..https://www.ft.com/content/a106c468-3567-11e7-99bd-13beb0903fa3

May 24, 2017 Posted by | India, renewable | Leave a comment