Kurukshetra february 2023



        The critical role of energy in the development activities, and the well-known adverse effects of fossil fuel dependency

in worsening the climate change impacts have influenced the use of renewable resources to generate energy.

India has been successful in leveraging the natural advantage of harnessing the renewable energy sources to equip sustainable development, and is setting an example.

As on today, India is consuming about 9000 billion units of energy for various purposes. About 47% of the total energy is sourced from coal and lignite, 31% from crude oil, about 15% from electricity (hydro, nuclear and other renewable sources) and 8 per cent from natural gas. (Energy Statistics, 2022).



        Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present, without compromising the ability

of future generations to meet their own needs.

        Renewable Resources: - These are the resources like sun and wind that are naturally replenished and do not

run out.



Impact of fossil fuels:

Other than the never-ending fear of extinction and carbon emission the fossil fuels also pose many strategic and health challenges. The use of fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and natural gas results in significant climate, environmental, and health costs that are not reflected in market prices.

  1. Ocean acidification: At least a quarter of the carbon dioxide emitted from fossil fuels is absorbed by the ocean, changing its chemistry (pH). The increased acidity makes it harder for marine organisms to build shells and coral skeletons.
  2. Extreme weather: According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, climate change, brought upon by burning fossil fuels, is contributing to more frequent and severe extreme weather events.
  3. Sea level rise: Oceanic and atmospheric warming due to climate change is melting glaciers and land-based ice sheets, resulting in global sea level rise. Sea levels have risen about 9 inches since the late 1800s, causing more frequent flooding, destructive storm surges, and saltwater intrusion.
  4. Air pollution: Fossil fuels produce hazardous air pollutants, including sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, carbon monoxide, and mercury, all of which are harmful to the environment and human health.
  5. Water pollution: From oil spills to fracking fluids, fossil fuels cause water pollution.
  6. Plastic pollution: Over 99 percent of plastics are made from fossil fuels.
  7. Oil spills: Fossil fuel extraction, transportation, and refining can lead to oil spills that harm communities and wildlife, destroy habitats, erode shorelines, and result in beach, park, and fishery closures.

These facts clearly indicate that the development achieved through burning of fossil fuels cannot be sustainable, and that we have to explore renewable energy options.

In view of this, in August 2022, India has updated the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), which embody efforts by each country to reduce national emissions as stipulated in Paris Agreement.

As per the updated NDCs, India now stands committed to reduce Emissions Intensity of its GDP by 45 per cent by 2030, from 2005 level and achieve about 50 per cent cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel-based energy resources by 2030.


Renewable energy

Today, India is  the  world’s  third  largest  producer of renewable energy, with about 42 per cent of our installed electricity capacity coming from non-fossil fuel sources.



Estimated renewable energy potential of India (other than large hydro) is about 1.5 million MW, of which 50 per cent is from solar, 46.7 per cent from wind, and the remaining from small-hydro, biomass and waste to energy.


Solar Power

According to the estimates of Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) 5000 trillion kwh energy is incident over India’s land area every year, with most parts receiving 4-7 kWh per sq. m per day.

        This is converted to electrical energy through photovoltaic cells. Advantages of solar energy:

    1. abundance in supply
    2. environment friendly
    3. ability to generate power on a distributed basis
    4. ability for capacity addition in short time leads
    5. only a small fraction of the total incident solar energy is required to meet the entire country’s power requirement.

The solar power-based cooking has significantly improved the quality of life, especially of rural women and girl children, by reducing the drudgery of long haul of fuel woods and risk of lung and ailments caused by kitchen smoke.

        Estimates by National Institute of Solar Energy suggest that covering 3 per cent of the waste land area with solar

photovoltaic modules can generate about 748 GW power.

In 2010, Government of India launched National Solar Mission (NSM) with active participation of States to promote sustainable growth while addressing the energy security challenges. This can also contribute significantly to our effort to tackle the challenges of climate change.


Wind Power

The study conducted by National Institute of Wind Energy (NIWE) identified seven states viz. Gujarat, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh with significant power generation wind potential.

        The wind potential of these seven states at 100m above the ground level is 293 GW.

Government has been promoting wind projects by incentivizing the investments through Accelerated Depreciation Benefit, which allows an investor to claim higher rate of depreciation in wind power infrastructure than that for the general assets.

Government has also introduced waiver of Inter State Transmission System (ISTS) charges for inter-State sale of solar and wind power, for projects to be commissioned by 30 June 2025.

India, having a natural advantage of 7500 km long coast line, has the potential of harnessing offshore wind energy. In 2015, Government of India notified National Offshore Wind Energy Policy with the primary objective of exploring and promoting deployment of offshore wind farms in the Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) of the country.



Since March 2019 Government of India has been recognizing Large Hydro Power Projects (LHPs) including Pumped Storage Projects (PSPs) having capacity of more than 25 MW as part of renewable energy.

According to the assessment made by Central Electricity Authority (CEA), India has the potential of economically exploitable hydro-power to the tune of 1,48,700 MW.

        However, only less than 30% of this is presently exploited despite having long life, low cost and high efficiency

among many other advantages.



Bio Fuels

        Ethanol and biodiesel are the two most common types of biofuels in use today.

        Ethanol is a renewable fuel made from various plant materials collectively known as biomass.

        Government has been implementing Ethanol Blended Petrol Programme wherein Oil Marketing Companies (OMC) will sell petrol blended with 10% ethanol.

        The National Policy on Biofuels announced in 2018 is aimed at accelerated promotion of biofuels with indicative

targets of achieving 20% blending in Petrol and 5% blending in diesel by 2030.

        Biodiesel is a renewable, biodegradable fuel manufactured domestically from vegetable oils, animal fats, or

recycled restaurant grease.

        It causes far less damage than petroleum diesel if spilled or released to the environment. It is safer than petroleum

diesel because it is less combustible.

        Presently, biodiesel is produced from imported palm-stearin oil in the country. However, we are phasing it out by

using used cooking oil as the feedstock.


Green Hydrogen

        Hydrogen is used as an energy source in industry, mobility and thermal applications. Green Hydrogen is produced by splitting water through electrolysis using an electric current.

        When the electricity used for hydrogen generation is sourced from renewable resources, that is without emitting

carbon dioxide, it is called green hydrogen.

        National Hydrogen Mission on was lauched by Hon’ble PM of India of 75th Independence day in 2021.

        The Mission aims to make India a green hydrogen hub which will help in meeting the target of production of 5 million tonnes of green hydrogen by 2030 and the related development of renewable energy capacity.


Ocean and Geo-thermal

        Ocean energy refers to energy derived from Wave Energy, Tidal Energy, and Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion.

        The estimated theoretical power potentials for Tidal and Wave energy are 12,455 MW and 41,300 MW respectively.

Geothermal Energy is a source of heat stored in the earth’s crust, which is manifested on surface as hot springs. In India, Geological Survey of India (GSI) has estimated that a tentative power potential of 10 GW could be extracted from geothermal energy.

  • Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL) has become the world’s first solar powered airport.
  • Groundwater development in the country is 61.6. It refers to Ratio of volume of ground water extracted every year to the annual ground water recharge.
  • The stage of ground water extraction is very high in the states of Delhi, Haryana, Punjab and Rajasthan, where it is more than 100%. In the states of Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka and Union Territories (UTs) of Chandigarh and Puducherry, the stage of ground water extraction is between 60-100%.
  • Use of renewable energy based micro irrigation systems, and the reuse of waste water treated in plants powered with renewable energy can significantly contribute to the environment, water & energy saving and in ensuring food security.


International Solar Alliance (ISA)-

ISA is an international inter-governmental organization established as a joint effort by India and France in November 2015 on the sidelines of the 21% Conference of Parties (COP21) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) held in Paris.

        Its objectives are scaling up solar energy, and reducing the cost of solar power generation through aggregation of demand for solar finance, technologies, innovation, research and development, and capacity building.

        ISA strives to help member countries develop low-carbon growth trajectories, with particular focus on the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and the Small Island Developing States (SIDS).



        ISA’s partnerships with multilateral development banks (MDBs), development financial institutions (DFls), private and public sector organisations, civil society and other international institutions is key in this drive.

        The ‘Towards 1000” strategy of ISA aims to mobilise USD 1,000 billion of investments in solar energy solutions by 2030 to provide energy access to 1,000 million people by installing 1,000 GW of solar energy capacity.



The pace of urbanization and commercialization has been increasing, adopting sustainable approach is inevitable for the very existence of living beings. Moreover, there should be an international cooperation, synergy and harmony in tapping the renewable resources by way of exchange of technology, sharing the benefits of advancements in scientific research and space technology, in assessing the global risks and making informed choices




The Government has taken a series of steps to empower farmers with renewable energy systems to make them energy self-sufficient, particularly in irrigating their fields. Various sources of renewable energy such as solar, wind, small hydro, biomass and agricultural wastes are being deployed in rural settings for agricultural purpose.

        Agriculture contributes nearly 15% to national GDP and provides livelihood to around two-third of the total working population in the country.

        Agriculture consumes nearly 20% of the electricity consumed at national level.

        Additionally, farmers have installed around nine million diesel pump sets to harvest groundwater for irrigation purpose.

        Energy consumption at this high level has raised concern in view of the India’s commitment to reduce the carbon intensity by less than 40 per cent by 2030 (COP-26).

        Government has set a target to make agriculture sector diesel free by 2024.


Resources at Work

Biogas is one of the most popular and versatile form of RE deployed extensively in rural India to serve many purposes. It has high calorific value gas by decomposition of organic material such as cattle dung, agricultural waste, poultry waste, municipal waste etc.

        The digested slurry from biogas plants, a by-product, is used as a nutrient enriched organic manure for improving

crop yield and also maintain soil health.

        Government of India is promoting installation of biogas plants by providing subsidy through two major schemes:

    • New National Biogas and Organic Manure Programme (NNBOMP) for biogas plants in size range of 1 cu.m.

to 25 cu.m. per day.

    • Biogas Power Generation (off-grid) and Thermal Energy Application Programme (BPGTP) for setting up biogas plants in the size range of 30 cu.m. to 2500 cu.m. per day.

        Government of India has launched a dedicated GOBARdhan- (Galvanising Organic Bio-Agro Resources Dhan)

scheme (Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen Phase-2) with twin objectives

    • To make the villages clean and
    • Generate clean power from organic wastes.

        The scheme also aims to increase income of farmers by converting biodegradable waste into compressed biogas (CBG).

        Recently, Asia’s largest CBG plant was inaugurated at Sangrur, Punjab with an FDI investment of Rs. 220 crores.


Sun at Service

        PM-KUSUM (Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Surkasha Evan Utthaan Mahaabhiyan) scheme, launched in 2019, has

emerged as a real game changer for energy security of farming community.



        PM- KUSUM is one of the largest initiatives of the world to provide clean energy to more than 35 lakh farmers and

also enhance their income.

        The scheme aims to add solar capacity of 30,800 MW by 2022 with total central financial support of Rs. 34,422 Crore

including service charges to the implementing agencies.

        The Scheme consists of 3 components:

  • Component A: 10,000 MW of solar capacity through installation of small Solar Power Plants of individual plants of capacity upto 2 MW.
  • Component B: Installation of 20 lakh standalone Solar Powered Agriculture Pumps.
  • Component C: Solarisation of 15 Lakh Grid-connected Agriculture Pumps.

          The scheme also has direct employment generation potential. According to estimates, each solar installation

creates approximately 24.50 job years per MW.

        It will also help boost domestic solar manufacturing mainly to make solar cells and solar modules for which we still depend on imports.

        The scheme will also lead to reducing carbon emissions by as much as 32 million tones per annum.

Due to its immense potential in Renewable Energy (RE) Government is focusing on decentralised RE systems and products. MNRE has recently released a framework (2022) to promote RE based applications that are used for earning livelihoods.



        The average carbon footprint of a person in India is 0.56 tonnes per year, compared to the global average of 4 tonnes.

        India’s transport demand is expected to increase by 2.7 times in over 30 year.

        Electric vehicles (EVs) provide solution to greener transport system which is far better than Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) based vehicles.

        Lifetime emissions from EVs today are 19-34 per cent lower than ICE cars.

        Indian automotive market is quite different compared to the majority of the developed world, where four-wheelers dominate personal mobility.

        Bus transport in India accounts for 38 per cent of passenger km, though its share in overall registered vehicles in India is just around 3.5 per cent. Two-wheeler accounts for 76-80 per cent of the total registered automotive in India.

        Mass mobility relies on public transport, two-wheelers, and three-wheelers. Therefore, FAME II was focused on these three segments. After the remodelled FAME II was launched in June 2021, the sales have increased by manifolds.



       A carbon footprint is the total greenhouse gas emissions caused by an individual, event, organization, service, place or product, expressed as carbon dioxide equivalent.





       Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (FAME II), is a scheme launched by the Government of India to give a boost to development of Electric Vehicles.

       This scheme was launched to achieve the goals of National Electric Mobility Mission Plan (NEMMP).

       Phase I lasted from 2015 to 2019 and Phase II of FAME was launched in 2019 and is expected to be completed by 2022.





Advantages of electric vehicles

Disadvantages of EVs

Lower running costs Low maintenance costs

Tax and financial benefits Better performance

Zero tailpipe emissions and environment friendly Easy to drive and quiet

Convenience of charging at home

Higher Purchase Cost Low Speed and Range Low Price on Selling

The Inconvenience of Service Station Battery Expenses

Slow Charging

Fewer Users

        India needs to have million-plus fast chargers to cater to the needs of EVs, mainly four-wheelers, cargo three- wheelers, Light commercial vehicles (LCVs), and Buses (Mainly intercity).

        Government-led companies such as BHEL / BEL can join hands to develop local supply chain for charger

manufacturing in India itself.

        Another part of India’s transition to clean mobility is recycling and refurbishing used batteries.

        Cumulative recycling volume by 2030 will be around 128 GWh and around 59 GWh will be from EVs alone.

        States have also provided several fiscal  and non-fiscal supports (On top of  those provided by the federal government), and already more than 22 states have declared their EV Policies.

        Even Indian Railways have launched their EV Policy. They not only want to phase out all ICE vehicles used by Indian railways in offices etc., but also to put the charging stations at all electrified railway station parking spaces.

    • Since EV is an evolving space, capacity building at all levels, along with upskilling and reskilling, is very important.

        “Shoonya -Zero pollution Mobility” is a consumer and corporate-facing campaign hosted by NITI Aayog.



India has laid an ambitious outline and policies to direct the country towards a cleaner, greener, and more connected world. The industry is also reciprocating the same, but the speed needs to pick up on all sides, including manufacturing and consumer acceptance.



        Burning of fossil fuels, deforestation, farming and livestock production all contribute to the greenhouse effect.

Industries and factories also play a major role in the release of greenhouse gases.

        The main effects of increased greenhouse gases are: Global Warming, Depletion of Ozone Layer, Smog and Air Pollution, Acidification of Water Bodies and many others.

        Over 80%  of India’s energy needs are met by three fuels: coal, oil and solid biomass as per India Energy Outlook


        Energy consumption accounts for 60 percent of total greenhouse gas emissions.

The Union Cabinet has given its approval to introduce the Production-Linked Incentive Scheme in High Efficiency Solar PV Modules for enhancing India’s Manufacturing Capabilities and Enhancing Exports - AatmaNirbhar Bharat with the scheme outlay as Rs. 24,000 cr. It aims to reduce import dependence in the area of energy sector. The PLI scheme has six objectives which are as follows:

  1. To build up solar PV manufacturing capacity of high efficiency modules.
  2. To bring cutting-edge technology to India for manufacturing high efficiency modules. Technologies which yield better module performance will be incentivised.
  3. To promote setting up of integrated plants for better quality control and competitiveness.
  4. To develop ecosystem for sourcing of local material in solar manufacturing.
  5. Employment generation and technological self-sufficiency.
  6. To encourage sustainable manufacturing practices and adoption of circular economy approaches.


Energy Conservation (Amendment) Bill, 2022 has been passed which focus on the use of non-fossil energy to decarbonize Indian economy. These initiatives will help India achieve targets of Paris Climate Agreement and significantly contributes towards reducing the pollution load and thereby mitigating environmental problems.

In 2008, National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) was prepared which has eight missions as a multi- pronged, long-term and integrated approach to address climate change. It has overarching policy framework for all climate actions including the expansion of solar energy resources.

        Subsequently, the states also prepare their respective State Action Plans on Climate Change (SAPCCs) that focus

on adaptation interventions.

Long-Term Low-Carbon Development Strategy submitted by India under United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) focus on the rational utilisation of national resources with due regard to energy security.

        In COP26 of UNFCCC held at Glasgow, Prime Minister Narendra Modi proposed a five-fold strategy termed as

Panchamratfor India to play its part in helping the world get closer to 1.5 degrees Celsius which were:

  1. India will get its non-fossil energy capacity to 500 gigawatts by 2030.
  2. India will meet 50 per cent of its energy requirements till 2030 with renewable energy.
  3. India will reduce its projected carbon emission by one billion tonnes by 2030.
  4. India will reduce the carbon intensity of its economy by 45 per cent by 2030.
  5. India will achieve net zero by 2070.

Green Energy Corridors is another programme implemented by MNRE in the country to promote renewable energy sources, to create intra-state transmission system for renewable energy projects. The It aims at synchronizing electricity produced from renewable sources, such as solar and wind, with conventional power stations in the grid.

Recently, Hon’ble Prime Minister of India declared Modhera village of Mehsana district of Gujrat as India’s first solar-powered village.

In Uttar Pradesh, a target of producing 22,000 MW electricity from solar energy in the next five years has been set viz. 14,000 MW from Solar Park, 4500 MW from Solar Rooftop Residential, 1500 MW from Solar Rooftop Non- Residential and 2000 MW under PM Kusum Yojana.




       Greenhouse gases are the gases that absorb the infrared radiations and create a greenhouse effect. For eg., carbon dioxide and chlorofluorocarbons.

       Global warming is a gradual increase in the earth’s temperature generally due to the greenhouse effect caused by

increased levels of carbon dioxide, CFCs, and other pollutants.





       PLI scheme is a scheme that aims to give companies incentives on incremental sales from products manufactured in domestic units.





TheParisAgreementisalegallybindinginternationaltreatyonclimatechange.Itwasadoptedby196Partiesatthe UNClimate Change Conference(COP21) in Paris, France, on 12 December 2015. Itenteredintoforceon 4 Nov. 2016. Its goal is to hold “the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels” and pursue efforts “to limit the temperature increase to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels.”






The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) is an international environmental treaty to combat “dangerous human interference with the climate system”, in part by stabilizing greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere.






Public awareness can be defined as the improvement of the public understanding of environmental issues with various aims, including building environmental awareness and getting public, financial and/or scientific support for solving issues.

It can be seen as a measure of how well-informed the public is about renewable energy, and it can be influenced by various factors such as media coverage, public education campaigns, and personal experiences.

Studies found six basic factors affecting the adoption of renewable energy, these are gender, age, education of the head of the household and education in general, occupation and interest in the environment, in technology, or in engineering and consciousness about environmental behaviour of people.

The recent energy shock caused by Russia-Ukraine war has highlighted the great dependence of nearly 80 per cent of the world’s population that resides in nations that are net importers of fossil fuels, making them susceptible to geopolitical shocks.

With Renewable energy, security and sustainability have become other major priorities for both customers and

energy providers.

To promote the use of renewable energy sources, an exclusive institution, the Department of Non-Conventional Energy Sources (DNES), was created in the Ministry of Energy in the year 1982. In 1992, the Department was upgraded into a separate Ministry of Non-Conventional Energy Sources (MNES) in 1992 and was re-named as Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) in October 2006.

The Ministry is being supported by five institutes, namely, (i) National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE), (ii) National Institute of Wind Energy (NIWE); (iii) Sardar Swarn Singh National Institute of Bio Energy (SSS- NIBE) (iv) Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA); and (v) Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI).

IREDA, a Non-Banking Financial Institution under the administrative control of this Ministry, provides term loans

for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.

As per the Annual Report of 2021-22, a comprehensive policy framework on Renewable Energy Research and Technology Development Programme is in place to support Research and Development in the new and renewable energy sector, including associating and supporting Research and Development.

There are specific schemes to promote renewable energy in India such as :

      • National Solar Mission being implemented by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy which aims to increase the share of solar energy in the total energy mix. The cumulative targets under the mission for Grid Connected Solar Power Projects consist of combined target of 100 GW with 40 GW Grid connected Rooftop projects and 60 GW large and medium size land-based solar power projects with total investment of around Rs.6,00,000 crore.
      • The Pradhan Mantri Kishan Urja Suraksha evam Utthan Mahabhiyaan (PM-KUSUM) scheme aims to add solar capacity of 30,800 MW by 2022.
      • The National Mission on Strategic Knowledge for Climate Change is another initiative to make people aware and seeks to build a knowledge system that would inform and support national action for ecologically sustainable development.



Renewable energy awareness policies are intended to promote the usage of renewable energy sources while also increasing public understanding of their benefits. This can be accomplished through a variety of approaches, such as education and outreach campaigns, financial incentives, and rules requiring the usage of renewable energy. Thus participation of all stakeholders viz government, citizens, businesspersons etc is needed.




The term “energy transition” refers to the change that is taking place in the global energy sector away from fossil- based systems of energy production and consumption, such as oil, natural gas, and coal, and toward renewable energy sources such as wind and solar, as well as lithium-ion batteries.

A transition to clean energy is a huge economic opportunity. India is particularly well placed to become a global leader in renewable batteries and green hydrogen. These and other low-carbon technologies could create a market worth up to $80 billion in India by 2030.

India’s announcement that it aims to reach net zero emissions by 2070 and to meet fifty percent of its electricity requirements from renewable energy sources by 2030 is a hugely significant moment for the global fight against climate change.

To reach net zero emissions by 2070, the IEA estimates that $160 billion per year is needed, on average, across India’s energy economy between now and 2030. That’s three times today’s investment levels. Therefore, access of low-cost long-term capital is key to achieve net zero.

The sun, the wind, the water, the heat of the earth, and plants are all examples of sources of energy that can be regenerated naturally and are used to produce renewable energy.

        Coal, oil, and biomass are the primary sources that contribute to India’s ability to meet its energy demands.

Together, these sources have reliably satisfied more than 80% of India’s overall energy consumption.

        Coal is the dominant source of energy in power production and used as a commercial fuel (especially heavy

industries such as iron and steel) and at present it fulfils 44% of that requirement.

India has made great progress in electricity access in recent years through the Saubhagya scheme, and government data indicate that more than 99% of households were connected to electricity in 2019.

According to the reports published by the International Energy Agency, within next two decades, the solar power which is currently less than 4% of total power production is going to become equal to that produced by coal, which currently account for around 70% of total energy production.

        The annual growth rate of India’s demand for electricity is 4.7% , which is approximately double the pace of

overall growth in the demand for energy.

Solar photovoltaic (PV) projects are now the most cost-effective technique for generating new power in India, and they are also among the most cost-effective methods worldwide as they have lower cost per watt than other forms of renewable energy.

India has close to 100 hydropower facilities, in addition to 9 pumped storage installations. In 2019, it achieved 50 gigawatts of potential hydropower capacity, moving it past Japan to take 5th place on the list of the world’s highest prospective hydropower capacities.

        Hydropower’s contribution to the overall mix of source is just around 10% of total output.

Between 2019 and 2040, India will have the highest rise in energy demand of any country, accounting for about one-quarter of the total global increase.

India is responsible for a large share of the global market for each product- around 10 per cent of the market for lithium-ion batteries, 15 per cent of the market for wind turbines, and 30 per cent of the market for solar photovoltaics.

        India faces a number of pressing near-term challenges in energy sector such as

  • The sharp increase in commodity prices has made energy less affordable
  • There is still a lack of reliable electricity supply for many consumers.
  • Continued reliance on traditional fuels for cooking causes unnecessary harm to many people’s health.
  • Financially ailing electricity distribution companies are impeding the urgent transformation of the sector.
  • And high levels of pollution have left Indian cities with some of the poorest air quality in the world.




Green energy- It is a term for energy that comes from renewable sources. Green energy is often referred to as clean, sustainable, or renewable energy. The production of green energy does not release toxic greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, meaning it causes little or no environmental impact.





       It is obtained by electrolysis of water. It powered entirely by renewable energy, so it generates no polluting emissions into the atmosphere and is the cleanest and most sustainable hydrogen.






       It is all about ‘balancing’ or cancelling out any carbon we produce. We reach net zero when the amount of greenhouse gas we produce is equal to amount taken away.



Way forward:

Following are some of actions that could be taken-

  1. Interlinking Women Empowerment with Green Energy: Women’s empowerment and leadership in the energy sector could help accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy by promoting clean energy.
  2. Diversifying Green Supply Chain: Supply chains for clean energy need to be diversified to a much larger number of countries rather than just confined to developed countries.
  3. Incentivizing in Least-Cost Energy Solutions such as the Unnat Jyoti by Affordable LEDs for All (UJALA) program decreased the unit cost of LED bulbs by over 75%.
  4. Focusing on Green Transport: such as adoption of e-buses, bus corridors and bus rapid transit systems with digitization of public transport.
  5. Multisectoral Approach to Energy Transition: In India, future growth will demand resilience on multiple fronts, such as energy system design, urban development, industrial growth and internal supply-chain management, and the livelihoods of the underprivileged.



Ministry of New & Renewable Energy organizes “Women in Renewable Energy: Call for Action” under Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav in 2022 which addressed the role and importance of women’s participation in Renewable Energy and to acknowledge the role of women entrepreneurs and leaders in the Renewable Energy Space.

National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE) organised “Suryamitra skill development programme in collaboration with State Nodal Agencies, at various locations across the country. It aims to develop the skills of youth, considering the opportunities for employment in the growing Solar Energy Power project’s installation, operation

&  maintenance in India and abroad.

Special emphasis is being given to rural women candidates during the selection process. Renewable energy not only opens up new job opportunities for women but also helps the state and market tap into a woman’s potential as a skilled and well-trained employee.

Distributed Renewable Energy (DRE) is a renewable energy-based system that can generate and distribute energy independent of a centralised electricity grid and provides a wide range of services like lighting, cooking, space heating, and cooling.

        In February 2022, MNRE released a draft policy framework for promoting DRE livelihood applications with an

explicit gender emphasis.

The policy supports the adoption of DRE livelihood technologies among women by providing access to finance for entrepreneurs and end users. This will support the women SHG members in creating new jobs and scaling their existing businesses using DRE technologies.

        Approximately, 76% of agri-allied activities are dominated by women in India.



CEEW study reveals that in India, women account for only an average of 11%of the total employees in the rooftop solar business of surveyed companies as compared to the global average of women in the renewables sector at 32%.

Areas of action that all stakeholders should focus upon are:

  • Need to educate and empower rural women on the benefits of RE and clean energy in improving their quality

of life.

  • Empowering  women  as  energy  entrepreneurs  with  the  support  of  the  country’s  Entrepreneurship Development Programmes (EDPs).
  • Going beyond energy provision and focusing on the productive use of DRE to improve women’s socio- economic participation: their skilling, equipment financing, and market linkages for the products being produced by end-users.
  • “Engendering” energy programmes and policies by conducting gender sensitisation and capacity-building


  • Targeted gender budgeting.



For renewable energy to truly transform the lives of rural women, all stakeholders- government, private industries, philanthropies, community-level organizations and technology enterprises will have to join hands. Only when women are at the center of renewable energy expansion, will India be able to achieve both inclusive and sustainable growth.



Types of hydrogen:

Grey Hydrogen- The most common form of hydrogen, it’s created from fossil fuels and the process releases carbon

dioxide which is not captured.

Blue Hydrogen- Blue hydrogen uses the same process as grey, except this time the carbon is captured and stored. This makes it much more environmentally friendly, but comes with added technical challenges and a big increase in cost.

Green hydrogen- It is defined as hydrogen produced by splitting water into hydrogen and oxygen using renewable


National Green Hydrogen Mission: The Union Cabinet, has approved National Green Hydrogen Mission. The initial outlay for the Mission will be Rs.19,744 crore to scale up Green Hydrogen production and utilisation across multiple sectors and align with global trends in technology, applications, policy and regulation.

MNRE (Ministry of New and Renewable Energy) is the nodal agency and will formulate the scheme guidelines for

implementation of the respective components.




The Mission will also help India export high-value green products making it one of the first major economies to industrialise without the need to ‘carbonise’. India’s distinct advantage in terms of low-cost renewable electricity, complemented by rapidly falling electrolyser prices, can enable green hydrogen to be not just economical compared to fossil-fuel based hydrogen but also compared to the green hydrogen being produced around the globe.

        The Mission will result in the following likely outcomes by 2030:

    • Development of green hydrogen production capacity of at least 5 MMT (Million Metric Tonne) per annum with an associated renewable energy capacity addition of about 125 GW in the country.
    • Over Rs. Eight lakh crore in total investments.
    • Creation of over Six lakh jobs.
    • Cumulative reduction in fossil fuel imports over Rs. One lakh crore.
    • Abatement of nearly 50 MMT of annual greenhouse gas emissions

Under the Strategic Interventions for Green Hydrogen Transition Programme (SIGHT), two distinct financial incentive mechanisms – targeting domestic manufacturing of electrolysers and production of Green Hydrogen

– will be provided under the Mission. The Mission will also support pilot projects in emerging end-use sectors and production pathways. Regions capable of supporting large scale production and/or utilization of Hydrogen will be identified and developed as Green Hydrogen Hubs.

Public-private partnership framework for R&D (Strategic Hydrogen Innovation Partnership – SHIP) will be facilitated under the Mission; R&D projects will be goal-oriented, time bound, and suitably scaled up to develop globally competitive technologies. A coordinated skill development programme will also be undertaken under the Mission.

        Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi aims to transform India into an energy independent nation by 2047 where

green hydrogen will play an active role as an alternate fuel to petroleum/ fossil-based products.

In 2020, India’s hydrogen demand stood at 6 million tonnes (MT) per year and is estimated that by 2030, the hydrogen costs will be down by 50 per cent. The demand for hydrogen is expected to see a five-fold jump to 28 MT by 2050 where 80 per cent of the demand is expected to be green in nature.

        Mission proposes pilot projects for replacing fossil fuels and fossil fuel-based feedstocks with Green Hydrogen

and its derivative such as-

    • Steel production is one of the potential sectors where Green Hydrogen can replace fossil fuels. The National Steel Policy 2017 states that Natural Gas is a greener alternative to meeting India’s goal of reducing the carbon intensity of GDP under the Paris Climate Agreement.
    • Considering  Hydrogen’s  advantages  for  heavy-duty,  long-haul  vehicles,  certain  routes  as  Hydrogen Highways.
    • Shipping and Port operations are among the key sectors likely to drive the future Green Hydrogen demand

and trade.



Green Hydrogen is likely to play a critical role in India’s energy transition, particularly in decarbonization of hard to abate sectors. The National Green Hydrogen Mission is a step in this direction. The Mission is expected to facilitate deployment of Green Hydrogen ecosystem and create opportunities for innovation and investments across the Green Hydrogen value chain, translating into investments, jobs and economic growth.


Previous Year UPSC mains questions

  1. India has immense potential of solar energy though there are regional variations in its development. Elaborate (2020)
  2. Give an account of the current status and the targets to be achieved pertaining to renewable energy sources in the country. Discuss in brief the importance of National Programme on Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs).(2016)
  3. Write a note on India’s green energy corridor to alleviate the problems of conventional energy.(2013)
  4. What do you understand by run of the river hydroelectricity project? How is it different from any other hydroelectricity project? (2013)