Renewable Energy February, 2017

Centre for Science and Environment
February, 2017
Dear Reader,

Renewable Energy Programme at Centre for Science and Environment has been working in the area of decentralized distributed generation both for rural and urban areas.

After focusing on addressing the issue of rural electrification, the team is now focusing on changing the electricity consumption plan in urban areas. We are looking at the possibility of replacing usage of diesel generator with solar rooftop in the gated communities in the report published recently. The study finds that the cost of power generation from a DG set, including the capital cost, is Rs 27 to Rs 33 per unit -- compared to rooftop solar tariff of less than Rs 10 per unit. Additionally, we are also analyzing the policies of the government on solar parks and whether the government investment made in developing these plants make sense for the solar and renewable sector in general.

On the global front, we are trying to work with Ministry of Energy and Minerals, Tanzania to increase the share of renewable energy in the country especially to meet the energy needs of people who do not have access today.

Recent Event
Conference on “Solar rooftop: Replacement for diesel generators in residential societies” held at India Habitat Centre, New Delhi on January 10, 2017
Online Solar Calculator
Policy brief on “Solar Rooftop – Replacing Diesel Generators in Residential Societies”
Like in the past, CSE tries to keep you updated with the latest developments in the sector through this newsletter.
February 09, 2017
Centre likely to dilute emission norms for thermal power plants,
relax deadline
In yet another case of shifting goal posts and diluting strict norms, the Centre has reportedly decided to relax the December 2017 deadline for more than 400 thermal plants in the country to comply with the new emission norms notified in December 2015. It has also decided to dilute the standards it had set.
February 09, 2017
Explosion at nuclear plant in northern France injures at least five
An explosion took place at the Flamanville nuclear facility in north-west France today morning (10 AM local time). According to reports, the explosion took place in the engine room of the plant owned by a French energy giant Électricité de France (EDF).
February 01, 2017
Government announces sops for renewable energy in Budget
While presenting the Union Budget 2017-18, Union Minister of Finance Arun Jaitley announced an allocation of Rs 5,473 crore for the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, signifying an increase of 8.7 per cent year-on-year besides various sops for the sector. During his speech, which incorporated the Railway Budget as well, Jaitley announced a push for solar energy in the railways.
January 17, 2017
China says no to 85 under-construction coal power plants
In a clear sign that the world's largest energy market is shifting away from coal power towards cleaner fuels, China suspended 85 under-construction coal power plants. The National Energy Administration (NEA) announced that these under-construction projects would no longer go ahead as part of measures outlined in its Five Year Plan.Chinese leaders care about emissions and they know that global warming is not just a concept.
January 17, 2017
Exxon's Rex Tillerson and the rise of Big Oil in American politics
“How Big Oil Bought the White House and Tried to Steal the Country” is the subtitle of a book that tells the story of a presidential election in which a candidate allowed money from big oil companies to help him win office and then rewarded them with plum appointments in his cabinet.With President-elect Donald Trump picking former ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson as secretary of state, one might think the book is an early exposé of the presidential election of 2016.
January 11, 2017
Africa's first grid-connected biogas plant makes energy affordable,
cuts carbon emissions
Eliminating energy poverty and cutting carbon emissions at one go; that’s exactly what Africa’s first grid-connected biogas plant is doing. A power firm in Kenya is using waste from vegetable and flower production and converting it into biogas to provide energy to country’s electricity network.
January 03, 2017
DTE in Indian Science Congress: chronic underfunding in this
sector highlighted
The 104th session of the Indian Science Congress was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi today at Tirupati. The theme of meeting this year is Science and Technology for National Development. In his speech, Modi talked about the importance of scientists to respond to change. He said that a deep-rooted curiosity-driven scientific tradition will allow quick adaptation to new realities.
January 02, 2017
Flawed forestry clearance mechanism needs an urgent fix
The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) recently initiated a review of the General and Standard Conditions to be applied while granting Forestry Clearances under the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980 and sought public comments. The stated objective of such conditions is to minimise ecological damage while maintaining a balance between development and conservation.
January 02, 2017
Arctic warming at least twice as fast as rest of the world: NOAA report
The Arctic Report Card is out and it isn’t quite encouraging. Researchers say that the Arctic continues to warm up at an "astonishing" rate. The report, which was prepared considering a range of environmental observations throughout the Arctic, highlights the changes that continue to occur in physical and biological components of the Arctic environment.
January 02, 2017
[Video] Analysing climate change in 2016
Last year was bad for our planet. Here’s a round-up of things that jeopardised us.
December 31, 2016
Time to go solar
When the Delhi government banned the use of diesel generators by high-rises on November 7, residential societies like Satisar in Dwarka were left wondering for a solution. Located in southwest Delhi, the eight-floor-high apartment faces a daily power cut of at least 40 minutes, and the ban, which will remain effective till January 31, would render essential services, such as lifts and motor pumps, unusable.
December 28, 2016
2016, the year that was: environment and energy
If 2015 ended on a note of hope, with the successful conclusion of the Paris climate talks, the overriding impression of 2016 is that last year’s optimism has been answered with a large reality check. The Paris Agreement was meant to herald a year in which politicians would finally cut through the stalemate and start saving the planet. Instead we watched aghast as swathes of the Great Barrier Reef were killed by climate change, while the political uncertainty only grew.
December 20, 2016
Water level in 91 major reservoirs reduces
The water level in 91 major reservoirs of India as of December 15 was at 62 per cent of their total storage capacity or 98.32 billion cubic metre (BCM), a statement by Ministry of Water Resources said. The current storage measures low when compared to last year’s level and the average of previous 10 years.The water level was at 127 per cent of the storage for corresponding period last year while the 10-year-average level stands at 98 per cent of total capacity.
December 15, 2016
The US environmental movement needs a new message
Environmental issues had a marginal impact on this year’s elections. This hard truth, and the strong pro-fossil-fuel tilt of President-elect Trump’s cabinet, are a wake-up call for the U.S. environmental movement. Based on reported cabinet selections that include Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt as EPA administrator and Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers for secretary of the interior, what environmental policies can we expect from the Trump administration?
Renewable Energy unit
Centre for Science & Environment
New Delhi
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Centre for Science and Environment
Renewable energy Department
41, Tughlakabad Institutional Area, New Delhi. India - 110062
Tel: +91-11 29955124, 29956110 | Fax: + 91-11 29955879 | E-mail: