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Winds in favour of solar

Nithyanandam Yuvaraj Dinesh Babu, Team Leader, EY India

“Solar-powered pumps would be a great solution to the energising requirements and also will relieve farmers from electricity tariffs”

Nithyanandam Yuvaraj Dinesh Babu, Team Leader, EY India, believes that while the economic growth would certainly be there with electrification of all demand centres, other aspects such as social upliftment would also contribute meaningfully to the country’s growth.

Landmark in Indian power sector
Indian power sector is at cusp of transformation. The country will soon achieve 100 per cent household electrification. This is a landmark in Indian power sector as it took more than 70 years to happen. The efforts are also being made for strengthening of transmission segment for reliable system availability and renewable off take. The key global disrupting trends in the sector are either under implementation or are knocking the door. The winds are in favour of boosting economic growth led by sustainable transformation in the sector.

Electrification vs economic growth
Economic growth can’t be the only indicator to assess country’s growth. While the economic growth would certainly be there with electrification of all demand centres, other aspects such as social upliftment, increase in education level, medical facilities, reduction in crime rate, would also contribute meaningfully to the country’s growth.

Game changing government intitiatives
In Indian power sector, with consumer base of more than 25 crores, transmission capacity of four lakh circuit kilometres (EHV transmission lines) and 8.5 lakhs MVA (EHV substation capacity) and 345 GW of generation capacity, any initiative would take time to show its impact. While all the schemes have been able to showcase a positive impact and proved beneficial, however, the pace at which Saubhagaya is being implemented is really impressive and has contributed meaningfully in a short span of time.

Contribution to solar sector
We have assisted central and state governments in many policy level, procurement level, PMU level initiatives in the space of renewable energy, but our marquee assignment wherein we are supporting 17 states in end to end implementation of rooftop solar programme is one of the key contribution to the sector. Under the mandate, we are assisting 17 states in policy and regulatory framework, capacity building, media and outreach, and demand aggregation to create an enabling system for accelerating rooftop solar deployment.

Potential in solar-powered irrigation
As on March 2016, the country had more than two crore agriculture category consumers. The number of pumps used by agriculture consumers would be much more as the DISCOM’s consumer base might not have 100 per cent of agriculture category consumers and also agriculture consumers might be utilising more than one pump set per connection. In 13th five-year plan, the country has envisaged addition of another 1.35+ crore agriculture consumers. Solar-powered pumps would be a great solution to the energising requirements and also will relieve farmers from electricity tariffs. This will not only reduce the energy requirement, but also provide sustainable solutions to Indian agriculture sector.

Viability key to sustainability
For every business to be sustainable, viability is the key. The financial turnaround of distribution sector is the much-needed relief for overall sustenance of the sector. While UDAY scheme, notified by GoI for financial turnaround of DISCOMs, is doing its bit, the sector needs to have a robust plan for sustainable and economically viable distribution sector.

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