The Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has reaffirmed its commitment to build nearly 26 GW of solar power capacity in the agricultural sector by 2022.
Minister RK Singh said that a large part of the installation in the agricultural sector will take the form of conventional land-based projects. For example, a capacity of 10 GW will be installed on barren or fallow land available to farmers. In this way, farmers will be able to sell electricity to retailers and earn additional income from these projects. In addition, financial support will be provided to farmers in the form of financial subsidies.
In addition, the government should support the installation of off-grid solar pumps. Solar pumps are conventional irrigation pumps integrated with solar panels. Irrigation is one of the most energy-consuming activities in the agricultural sector. Reducing the heavy load on the grid can greatly improve the financial status of retailers. In addition to installing new off-grid solar pumps, solar panels will be added to grid-connected irrigation pumps.
The government's program called PM-KUSUM will provide a subsidy worth 344 billion rupees. The Indian government aims to reach an installed capacity of 25.7 GW by 2022. Although the minister has not shared the progress made so far under the plan, it will be a challenge for the government to achieve this in a timely manner.