Interesting question, as this is one of the most debatable topics in almost all the Renewable Energy forums and discussions!
Today, I will try to put forth my views on whether Solar Power is a renewable source of energy or not.
Let us first understand what does renewable energy really mean? Any energy which is produced in large numbers without the fear of extinction of natural resources can be easily construed as Renewable Energy.
Simply put, the renewable energy source can be explained as: If utilizing a resource today doesn’t reduce its availability tomorrow, then it’s renewable. There is although a catch to it, because the definition of a renewable resource depends on its usage i.e. how much and how quickly we use it.
Another way of finding out if Solar energy is renewable or not is by comparing their characteristics.
The foremost characteristics of Renewable energy, is that it is a clean and non-polluting energy. No toxic wastes or greenhouse gases are emitted by a renewable energy source in the process of producing electricity. Secondly, It is a long term sustainable energy source. And finally, it is arguably the most cost-effective and efficient energy source.
Similarly, Solar energy is also free source of energy that is sustainable and absolutely inexhaustible, unlike other energy sources like fossil fuels that are not infinite. While getting generated, Solar power does not pollute our environment either.
The availability of Solar Energy thus becomes the single most important aspect to ascertain whether it is Renewable or not. The sun emits same amount of energy everyday, but that may not always be the same. In the future, maybe in a few billion years from now, the sun will use up its energy and the emission of solar power will diminish. What happens to the sun, however, has no impact on how much energy we yield from sunlight.
While the sun is not really an endless resource, for the entire life span of human race solar energy will still be present, making it a virtually unlimited, renewable energy resource. Therefore, solar energy, such as the photovoltaic one, is undoubtedly a renewable energy while electricity made using coal, natural gas or oil is electricity non renewable.
How solar power pushes growth in India’s electricity generation
Solar energy power generation has shown a rapid depend in India due to its strong government Backing. The National Solar Mission was launched on the 11th January, 2010 by the Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh initial target was 20,000 GW by 2022 which was later increased by our present Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi. India has increased its solar power generation capacity by nearly 5 times from 2,650 MW on 26 May 2014 to 12,288.83 MW on 31 March 2017. The country added 5,525.98 MW in 2016-17, the highest of any year.
The Mission has set the ambitious target of deploying 20,000 MW of grid connected solar power by 2022. The total installed solar power electricity capacity, including rooftop and off grid projects, has crossed 10 giga watts. With such positive response government has announced scheme to double the solar power generation capacity under the solar parks scheme to 40,000 MW by 2020. India had solar power installed capacity of 9,012.69MW as of 31 December.
As a recent report by Bridge To India it is expected to add new solar capacity of 5.1 GW this year, which is a growth of 137% over last year
India is expected to become the world’s third biggest solar market from 2018 onwards after China and the US,” it said. Tamil Nadu has the highest installed solar energy capacity, followed by Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh and Punjab.
What is net metering policy for rooftop in India
Net metering allows commercial and residential consumers to use their solar energy power generation to feed electricity which they do not use. They can feed it back into the grid and they can use credited units anytime in whole year, this account will be settled on 31st of March every year if generated units are more than their consumption then they can get rebate in terms of money.
Types of metering:
=> Gross metering
=> Net metering
Author Bio: This article has been kindly provided by Janvi who works as a content writer for Agni Solar Systems Pvt. Ltd. He loves to write on solar energy topics – helping people to improve their knowledge and stay up to-date.