A number of hydropower projects across the Central, State and private sectors, with a cumulative capacity of over 13,000 MW, are witnessing significant time and cost overruns, according to consultancy firm PwC.
The consultancy says while India has the fifth largest hydropower reserves in the world, with untapped potential of over 100GW, till date only 3.2 giga watt has been installed by the private sector of the total potential of 7 per cent.
This provides the private sector tremendous scope to help accelerate development of the sector.
A PwC-Assocham report titled Accelerating Hydropower Development in India for Sustainable Energy Security pins the slow pace of hydropower development in the past to factors such as complex clearance and approval procedures, land acquisition issues, insufficient market depth and scope, limited availability of long-term financing, existing models for sharing of hydro benefits.
The report also states that though private participation in the hydropower sector has gained momentum in the recent past, it still faces many impediments across various stages of a project’s development lifecycle.
Yogesh Daruka, Partner -Hydropower and Resources, PwC India in a statement said, “Hydropower is ideally suited to support the variability and intermittency of solar and wind generation, through provision of peaking support and ancillary services. Accelerated hydropower development will play a critical role in supporting the Government of India’s renewable energy capacity target of 175 GW by 2022.”
“Recent initiatives such as interest subsidy, hydropower purchase obligations and classification of hydropower as renewables (irrespective of its capacity) are likely to accelerate growth for the sector and reduce the impediments faced by hydropower developers. This will help revive many of the hydro projects in the country, which are currently stranded,” he added.