Cabinet Approves Phase II of Rooftop Solar Programme
20, Feb 2019
Prelims level : Economy Mains level : Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.
- The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs approved Phase-II of the Grid Connected Rooftop Solar Programme that aims to achieve a cumulative capacity of 40,000 MW from rooftop solar projects by 2022.
- The phase-II is meant to achieve cumulative capacity of 40,000 megawatt (MW) from rooftop solar (RTS) projects by 2022.
- The Phase II programme provides for central financial assistance (for residential rooftop solar installations) up to 40% for rooftop systems up to 3kW and 20% for those with a capacity of 3-10kW.
- The second phase will also focus on increasing the involvement of the distribution companies (DISCOM). The total central financial support provided under the scheme would be ₹34,422 crore.
- Under phase-II programme, focus will be on increased involvement of Discoms. Performance-based incentives will be provided to Discoms, based on RTS capacity achieved in a financial year over and above the base capacity i.e. cumulative capacity achieved at the end of previous financial year
- As per the statement, the programmes will have substantial environment impact in terms of lowering CO2 emissions and has a potential to generate employment opportunity equivalent to 9.39 lakh job years for skilled and unskilled workers. And also for addition of 38GW capacity under Phase-II of the scheme by the year 2022.
Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan:
- In a separate decision, the Cabinet approved the launch of the Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan aimed at providing financial and water security to farmers.
- Through the scheme, farmers will be given financial assistance to set up solar panels in their unused or fallow land.
- The Kusum (Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan) scheme was announced in the Union Budget in 2018. The scheme provides for 5 lakh off grid solar pumps to begin with. The Indian farmer will effectively bear only 10 percent of cost for solarising his agricultural pump under a scheme unveiled in the Budget 2018-19.
- The government will be spending Rs 48,000 crore over 10 years as central financial assistance (CFA) on the Kusum scheme which aims to encourage the use of barren land for setting up solar power plants.
- A similar amount will have to be given by the states and the financing institutions towards Kusum, which is to be put up to the cabinet for approval.