Wind and Solar Supply One-Tenth of India’s Power in 2020

This article first appeared on the BNEF mobile app and the Bloomberg Terminal.

  • Total power generation is down 3% in 2020 over last year
  • Hydro imports from Bhutan increased by 60% in 2020

Wind and solar power plants generated 9.3% of all grid-based power demand in India in 2020 – an increase from their 8% share in 2019.

Solar power generation increased by a quarter in 2020 over 2019 due to a bigger fleet. Wind generation was 5% lower in 2020 compared to 2019. This was despite higher installed capacity, due to lower wind speeds through the year, particularly during August-October.

The ‘must run’ status of renewables and lower generation from other technologies due to weak power demand also helped increase the share of wind and solar in the generation mix.

Coal and gas power plants supplied 73% of total power demand in 2020, down from 75% in 2019. Other zero-carbon sources like hydro, nuclear and biomass supplied 17% of electricity in 2020, compared to 16% in 2019.

The share of wind and solar in Indian generation mix will increase in future as companies such as Tata Power, Renew Power, Adani Green Energy, Azure, Acme and NTPC build 37 gigawatts of new projects auctioned in the last two years.

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