Alternative Energy

Alternative Energy

Alternative energy news, and information about renewable energy technologies.

Sep 25

World’s Largest Solar Power Project Planned

Posted in Energy Industry | Future Technology | Solar Power

World's Largest Solar Power Project Gujarat, a state of India, is quite eager to opt for alternative sources of energy. It started out as a small dream. The Gujarat government visualized only 500 MW of solar power generation by 2014. But this humble goal may now be increased to 3,000 MW. The Gujarat Government is undertaking a $10 billion project and it will hold the distinction of the world’s largest solar power facility in India. This project will be backed by former U.S. President Bill Clinton. The 3,000oMW project will get aid with logistics and financial support from the William J Clinton Foundation. This foundation is a charitable organization founded by the former President. The foundation and the Gujarat government signed a preliminary agreement on Sept. 8, 2009.

Recently a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed by Mr S. Jagadeesan, Principal Secretary, State Energy Department, and Mr Ira Magaziner, Chairman of the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI). Jagdeesan stated, “The Clinton Foundation will help us in bringing manufacturers and power generators and also in providing access to international funding at cost-effective interest rates. They are facilitators. We will invest in the infrastructure.” The project would be allotted a 10,000 hectares of land spread across three locations within an area of 150 square kilometers (58 square miles) in Gujarat.

The Clinton Climate Initiative which is a part of the foundation will assist in identifying producers of solar thermal equipment. Jagdeesan said, the manufacturers will be selected in three to four months. The Gujarat government will establish the solar parks in special economic zones. They will focus on in developing manufacturing facilities close to the generation site to reduce costs.

The project would be completed in the time span of five years. Gujarat Government along with CCI will try to arrange cheap funds from multilateral agencies such as the Asian Development Bank. The state government will also try to incorporate hybrid plants in the project that use both solar energy and natural gas to generate power.

“When there is sunshine we’ll generate using solar and when the sun is not shining we’ll generate using natural gas,” Jagdeesan said. “Gas is available to us in Gujarat. We will provide gas connectivity.”

The proposed solar energy park will cover an area of around 5,000 hectares. The solar site will be in the cities of Banaskantha, Patan, Surendranagar and Kutch. This area is mostly an infertile desert land and an ideal site for harnessing solar energy.

In January, the State Government had announced a solar energy policy to harness the potential of the inexhaustible source, and has allotted a capacity of over 700 MW to 34 national and international developers for setting up solar power plants in the State.

According to the MoU signed with the CCI, the State Government would look after identification of land and provide the infrastructure for setting up the solar power plants. It would request national and international developers to set up these plants on chargeable basis for the infrastructure created. The power created by these installations would be purchased by the State power utilities.

The projected 3,000-plus MW solar power installations would produce over 5,200 million units of energy. They will naturally help in reducing carbon-dioxide emission to the extent of 5.2 million tonnes per year. This project is also expected to generate employment opportunities for over 20,000 people.

  • Greg Cimeno

    I bet you guys didnt know Texas was the nations leading wind energy producer when Bush was the governor.

  • Diego Herrera

    Yeah, Texas also was the leading executioner state when Bush was the governor.

  • Scott Watson

    Why can’t we do this in the US? Seriously, why? Damn oil companies…

  • Christopher Clinton

    Ya know, India is doing a lot of efficiency projects like this… must be their population density and is it just me or does India have/attract particularly motivated intellectual and spiritual people, despite it’s poverty.

    Well, more than the oil companies, .is the people in the us. We indirectly support the oil companies by our short-sighted consumer habits.

  • Jamal Demnati

    Very good step… hope other underdeveloped countries will join this alternative nature source of energy.

  • Justan Olfrend

    We need to do this here in the US… these could be jobs… good jobs.

    Manufacturing the parts… installation and maintenance

  • Dan Schulz

    I wouldn’t give the people or government India too much credt for this project. It’s vast expansion in scope is primarily due to the financial backing of William Clinton Foundation and Clinton Climate Initiative. (Thanks Uncle Bill). Also India does not have sufficient fossil fuel resources, nor the delivery grid infastructure or access to Nuclear development that Europe has embraced. It’s wrong to assume India’s motivation is intellectually based. They are blessed with a perfect environment for Solar development and Western financial backing. It’s easyto assume that India would be just as consumptive as the US if they had the wealth to support such habits. That’s not enlightenment, it’s economics.

  • Azhar Qureshi

    This is a very good development. Exploitation of solar energy as one of the alternative sources of energy is need of the hour. This may greatly help us conserve our fast depleting natural resources.

  • Erica Lynn Stafford

    Please keep us posted with the progress. I am curious to know how the outcomes are tied to local communities to reduce unemployment and increase business ownership.

  • John Barnes

    India leads the way. Solar power to charge solar bikes!

  • Bruce Lee Anderson

    Good, but wait til advanced .4 & .5 conversion solar cells develop — less effect on Wildlife, Plants and habitat.

  • Madhu Ramachandran

    There is so much sunshine in India, its a shame this was not done much early (better late than never). Finally Gujarat shows the way and hopefully other Indian states will follow through.

  • Ana Margarita Perez Martin

    A project that deserves great recognition. It is obvious that non-oil producing countries are those with the need and duty to develop all sources of alternative energy for its own development and environmental conservation. They should be provided all the attention and support.

  • Rajendra M. Trivedi, M.D.

    Though this is a non-starter project -The day will come when SELCO and Gujarat and Clinton Foundation will do good to many who needs light.


  • Howard Butts

    The visionary that India has is very impressive and one that all other countries can aspire too. The amount of energy striking the earth is nothing less than phenomenal and can be harvested by most countries if they only tried to.

    I just had 1700 w of photovoltaic installed and have watch my meter STOP and even run backwards.

    That is true satisfaction.
    Howard B

  • Steven Austin

    This sounds like a wet cooled plant. Three thousand megawatts will require 16,000 acre feet of water. You can try to make this as rosy as you want, but you should know that it is not sustainable for a overpopulated, poverty stricken nation the size of Californa with almost 2 billion people to use up that much water. India does not have those kind of resources.

  • Howard Butts

    Steven I hate it when I don’t get it. 16,000 acre feet of water? A wet cooled plant? Poor people need electricity too. India has a car that is reputed to get 100 mile per gallon and sells for under $5000.00. There is a lot of very bright people that live in India that need and are willing to work for green power installation.

    Thanks Steven
    Howard Butts

  • Andy R

    Mr Austin, India’s population is 1.2B not 2B, and its land area is 7.75 times that of California. So its population density is about 8% of what you suggested. If you can’t get basic geography right, then what could you possibly know about India’s resources? And why use archaic units that the rest of the world abandoned decades ago? Units that tell us nothing about water consumption rate?

  • Dan Chance

    How many acre/feet of water fall during one one monsoon season?

  • hsassoc

    Sounds like a great idea. Developing countries such as India are big polluters so anything that offsets this has to be welcomed.

  • barbra

    I’m a sophomore in high school and we are learning about solar power in science class. I think that it is cool and that it can do a lot to save the earth and save money in the long run. We have to make a solar cook for our project this month and the information on it is so amazing. I mean the fact that the food u can cook with it is healthier and it wouldn’t burn. So now we are writing a 200 word essay on solar power and weather or not we think it is a good thing or a bad, but i believe it is good.

    What’s good for the earth is good for me.

  • Shyamala

    This sounds like a wonderful idea, where we could reduce both the pollution and increase the employment in a highly populated country like this, instead of going on depending on coal.

  • Hiro Chandwani

    Great news. I have gone through the comments and am disappointed at some negative ones. A very good step forward and only the forward thinking leaders like Narendra Modi can come out with such projects. However, I have certain reservations about its implementation.

    First, there would be delays due to red tapism.

    Second, The technology is expected to be imported is too expensive as it is thought that imported technology is best. Whereas, the technology is not new, it is the design that counts as to how to make use of best and cheaper materials. We are a new entrant in this field and can provide cheaper alternatives.

    Thirdly, there is other source of cheaper Renewable Energy from ocean and Gujarat state in India happens to be blessed with abundant resources in that it has just the right environments along its coast to tap this energy. For example, Cambay is one of the few ares of the coast which has underwater currents and could be exploited in the best possible manner.
    Much more energy than that from sun could be harnessed from ocean that too at cheaper costs.

  • Nilesh Patel

    This is win-win situation for both in solar power generation for Gujarat. with Best ROI with Cheap lands in Gujarat, Government going out of way to help set up PV project, There were more than 200 companies showed interest for solar power generation project during vibrant Gujarat festival. since then 42 Companies got PV allotment from Gujarat government. As last news follows 12 companies acquired land already.

  • Peter Smith

    Desert nations and the poorer nations finally have the opportunity to break the shackles of (NO POWER).

    Their use of alternate energy will see them become economic powers in their own right.

    Countries that rely on fossil fuels will suffer significant impact because they will try to protect their current industries such as petroleum, power and manufacturing. To make significant changes to these industries would mean dumping existing technology for the new and so impact on profits to shareholders.

    Desert nations finally have a golden opportunity as long as the produced wealth does not remain in the hands of a few people.

    I wish them outstanding success.


    It is a great step forward to implement Renewable Energy Power Plants as the fossil fuel resources are going to run out soon . India has abundant resources of Renewable Energy such as Solar, Wind, Ocean etc. and an impressive technical manpower to implement these. I really congratulate the leadership of Gujarat State to take a bold decision and hope other states in India will follow soon . This will encourage the Solar PV industry in India to grow faster .

  • Chandanmal

    The Gujrat Govt. is more advance than other states to implement the new projects.

  • P.R.IYER

    Dear All It sounds very good
    The whole project was thought of about a year ago. What are the developments till date? I am of the view that we can transform this nation into a energy surplus one the moment we tap all natural and renewable sources of Power

    Not only that, once we are at it I would suggest our planners should come with comprehensive plans for producing potable water as well. Rajasthan and Gujarat are the places that will need this most.

    There are conventional plants along our sea coasts using coal which could have generated good quality water with out substantial loss of power , had they been conceived in the design stage.

    I am not comfortable with the idea of using natural gas in the absence of sunlight. This will reduce the carbon credits We should think in terms of wind /ocean thermal /biomass etc.
    Any way these little steps will one day pave the way for avoiding Nuclear /Coal based plants

  • Anand

    Looking at the comments of few of Solar patrons here I am bit surprised and shocked about the lack of knowledge people in west have about India. So let me quickly sort this out.

    India is not a desert, poverty stricken hungry nation. You can say it is now not in that glorious state as it was 500 years back where it contributed to 58% of total world trade,after being rules and abused by Mughals and then European rulers(No offense meant to existing friends in those nations now). Come and have a look at the Business houses and Hitech centers in Megacites in India and you shall be surprised to see that they are at par with their counterparts in EU and US.

    The main problem India is facing now is not food or power or any other basic needs that a human being requires; it is the corruption that is pulling India to neolithic ages and it might succeed one day looking at sorry state of affairs of its politicians.

    Solar energy usage is too not spared by this demon. India is one of the only countries of the world that is gifted if all the natural resources of the world that can be harnessed safely without disturbing mother nature like Sea, Sun, Geo thermal, Wind,Rainfall, Nuclear, Coal, Rivers etc and all of these are abundantly found here. Its up to politicians here whether they want to use them properly of benefit of entire humanity or let it waste for benefit of their bank balances.

  • Kundan Singh Deshwal

    First of all con-grates to the William J Clinton Foundation and the Gujarat government for the agreement.This is one of the best deal for the great future of alternative energy in India.That will encourage other state to follow other alternative energy sources.

  • Aditya Datar

    this is great news!
    and this is possible only because of Gujrat’s Chief Minister Mr. Modi.
    Gujrat is the only state in India where all villages have electricity.
    India is starting a little late but that’s because all the european countries have looted us. it is only because of India that their Economies are the people from the so called “First World” should think a thousand times before criticizing India and her sons.

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