NEW DELHI: India on Saturday put renewable energy at the centrestage of the G20 dialogue on energy transition and global environment for sustainable growth.
Addressing counterparts from 20 major economies assembled in Japan’s Karuiawa city, power minister R K Singh leveraged India’s rapid expansion of renewable power capacity and successful energy justice programme to underline a green path for future development.
Singh said India is confident of meeting 40% of its power needs from renewable sources by 2030 as part of climate commitments. India is targeting 175 GW renewable energy capacity by 2022 and is almost half way through.
“India has come to certain conclusions (after examining the questions of environment, energy access and sustainability). One of them is renewable energy… India now has renewable power at 3.5 US cents. No other source can give you energy at such low rates,” Singh said.
Singh oversaw the completion of bringing power to over 18,000 villages in India that were yet to be connected and led the programme to light up some 3.5 million willing households from economically poor sections.
Riding on the rapid expansion in renewable energy capacity and other sectoral reforms, the Narendra Modi government launched massive rural and household electrification drives since 2015-16 along with schemes for more efficient electricity. These measures have raised India’s per capita consumption to 1149 kWh in 2017-18 from 1075 kWh in 2015-16. This figure is expected to rise further when data comes in for 2018-19, but it will still be way behind the current global average of 3127 kWh.
The G20 is made up of 19 countries and the European Union.