The Clinton Foundation plans to set up solar farms in the Indian state of Gujarat that will have a total combined capacity of at least 3MW.
The organisation recently signed a memorandum of understanding with the Gujarat government to build four or five solar farms that would each have an installed capacity of between 700 MW and 800 MW. Electricity generated would be sold to state power companies.
The scheme is being overseen by the foundation’s Clinton Climate Initiative, which was launched in 2006 by former US president Bill Clinton to work with governments and businesses worldwide to address major sources of greenhouse gas emissions.
Reportedly, Gujarat has allocated 1,500 hectares of land in the Rann of Kutch, a desert along the Pakistan border.
The PV farms may be eligible for incentives under Gujarat’s Solar Power Policy, launched in January. The policy exempts solar energy plant operators from paying electricity duty and compels grid operators to buy electricity from them for 25 years at a fixed tariff – the feed-in tariff for projects commissioned before 31 December 2010 is 13 rupees per kilowatt hour for the first 12 years of power generation and 3 rupees per kWh for the remaining 13 years.
Now, that sounds interesting. This was the same policy that was adopted by Germany and Japan almost 25 years back and those have paid rich dividends to those countries, making them leaders in solar energy. Could India do it too?
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