The Indian government seems to be doing its bit to move towards renewable energy, if only at a slow pace. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) recently wrote to the state governments, asking them to set up ‘solar zones’ to boost private sector investments into large-scale solar projects across the country. Also expected this year are four large solar projects, which may well become the largest in the world on completion.

According to MNRE’s joint secretary Tarun Kapoor, state governments have begun work on the solar zones, which are touted to be on a bigger scale than the mega solar parks conceived by the Ministry. However, the government is not purchasing land for solar zones but will acquire transmission facilities and provide critical infrastructure such as roads and water. The land area will be large for such projects, the acquisition of which will rest with developers with the MNRE providing information on land availability.

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Source: The Hindu

However, land prices for solar projects remain something of a worry with Kapoor admitting that they haven’t been as low as was expected in the case of the country’s first attempt with the Charanka solar park in Gujarat.

The Energy Minister for Madhya Pradesh, Ranjendra Shukla, also announced the tender schedule for a 750 MW solar park that is to be located in Rewa and will house three 250 MW plants. The tenders were expected to fetch final bids in February with the winners being announced in March. Full commissioning would being next year. The state already has solar capacity of 535 MW with its several projects and with Rewa it will likely house the biggest solar park in the world.

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