The explosion of new technologies—like electric vehicles, rooftop solar panels, energy storage and advanced metering infrastructure—promise a more efficient, reliable and resilient energy future. However, the most important element to achieving a lower carbon future is the electricity grid. To deploy emerging energy technologies at scale, the grid needs to undergo a transition, shifting its power supply away from higher-emission resources, like coal, to ones that produce fewer emissions, like renewables.
India’s tremendous growth in renewable energy capacity over the last three years has been enabled by the continued evidence of near record low solar and wind power tariffs and speed of development that has set the nation on a clear and achievable path towards its renewable energy target of 275 gigawatts (GW) by 2026/27.
A key prerequisite to continuing India’s renewable energy investment ambitions is the need to concurrently build out and modernise India’s national transmission grid. Significant infrastructure upgrades will be required to address the needs of an evolving energy network. This includes upgrading existing transmission lines to incorporate distributed energy resources and building new lines to improve wholesale market operations, increase resilience and bring energy from remote renewable resources to population centers.
Given India’s geographic spread of renewable rich states on the western and southern coasts, inter-regional transmission capacity for transmitting power from energy surplus states to deficit states will be needed, as well as better load balancing capacity.