Modi’s solar mission faces challenge from high power consuming small businesses; survey explains how

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Published: April 3, 2019 5:36:24 PM

Even as Modi government set a target of having 40 gigawatt (GW) of rooftop solar capacity by 2022, many small businesses are hesitant to install rooftop solar panels, a survey said.

Modi rally on Wednesday, Modi rally in BengalThe report points towards introduction of supportive regulations, risk-bearing financing, and awareness building to scale up rooftop solar in the sector.

Even as Modi government set a target of having 40 gigawatt (GW) of rooftop solar capacity by 2022, many small businesses are hesitant to install rooftop solar panels, a survey said. Several high power-consuming SMEs perceive performance risks in using solar panels, according to a new report from Deloitte and Climate Investment Funds (CIF)

“The level of awareness about rooftop solar was quite low among the sample surveyed, many high-power consuming SMEs were hesitant to install rooftop solar because of the perceived performance risks,” the report added.

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The report points towards introduction of supportive regulations, risk-bearing financing, and awareness building to scale up rooftop solar in the sector.

“Limited access to finance, need to strengthen awareness, and escalating energy expenses are impacting the long-term profitability, competitiveness, and sustainability of the sector. However, it presents great opportunity, and a multi-pronged approach involving supportive regulations, risk-bearing financing, and awareness building is needed to demonstrate viability and help scale up rooftop solar in the sector,” says Abhishek Bhaskar, Energy Specialist, CIF.

The survey, ‘Scaling Up Rooftop Solar in SME Sector in India’, was conducted by across 150 MSMEs in six industrial clusters including rubber and plastic, pharmaceuticals, automobiles, paper, food and beverage, and textile.

“World Bank has long supported India’s renewable energy ambitions, including rooftop solar, which is an integral part of our clean energy strategy. Supported by the Clean Technology Fund (CTF), the program has delivered financing to close to 300 MW so far working in close partnership with State Bank of India (SBI), and is all poised to surpass its initial goals,” said Simon Stolp, Lead Energy Specialist, The World Bank.

“This CTF supported work is quite timely since a significant amount of this financing goes to installations for MSMEs, a sector that we have also identified as one of the potential areas for future growth” he added.

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