India deployed 8.8GW of solar in 2021 so far, up 280% on last year

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India had 46.3GW of installed solar as of September. Image: ReNew Power.

India installed around 8,811MW of solar between January and September 2021, a 280% increase on the same period of 2020, according to JMK Research & Analytics.

The consultancy, which previously forecasted that 2021 will be a “landmark year” for solar in India, said the heightened deployment is mainly a result of projects being commissioned that were delayed last year because of COVID-19 disruptions.

Of the country’s total solar installs between January and September 2021, 2,068MW were rooftop systems, a 134% rise on the same time last year, with the state of Gujarat accounting for a quarter of rooftop additions thanks in part to policy support, JMK said.

Four states – Gujarat, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra – were said to account for more than two-thirds of all solar additions during the nine months, with Rajasthan leading in terms of utility-scale deployment. Independent power producer ReNew Power recently commissioned a 250MW plant in the state.

Figures from India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) showed that as of September 2021, the country had 46.3GW of installed solar capacity, 85% of which were ground-mount projects.

JMK forecasts that around 11GW of utility-scale PV and 3GW of rooftop solar will be installed in 2021 in India as long as a third wave of COVID-19 does not hit the country.

Research from Bridge to India published in August suggested that India will add 2,450MW of solar PV in Q4 of this year. The consultancy’s managing director, Vinay Rustagi, told PV Tech earlier in the year that he expects the country to have around 65GW of deployed solar by the end of 2022, meaning it will fall short of a government target to reach 100GW by then.

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