Renewable Energy Land Use in India_00.1
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Renewable Energy Land Use in India

 

Relevance

  • GS 3: Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.

 

Context

  • Recently, Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) has released a report named Renewable Energy and Land Use in India by Mid-Century.

 

About the report

  • This report considers the land-use implications of India’s unfolding energy transition and the important choices about where these resources should be located.
  • It reviews current land-use studies and then outlines likely future requirements based on the mid-century scenarios.

 

Global Green Hydrogen Hub

 

Key points of the report

  • India will use significant stretches of land by 2050 to install renewable energy generation capacities and the land-use increase may have an impact on the environment.
  • Around 50,000-75,000 square kilometres of land will be used in 2050 for solar energy generation and for an additional 15,000-20,000 square km for wind energy
  • The resulting land cover changes, including indirect effects, will likely cause a net release of carbon up to 50 grams of carbon dioxide per kilowatt-hour.
  • Unlike coal-based power, renewable energy generation does not fundamentally change the character of land.
  • Electricity generation has to compete with alternative uses for land such as agriculture, urbanisation, human habitation and nature conservation, unlike Europe or the United States of America.

 

Renewable Energy Land Use in India_50.1

 

Recommendations

  • Minimising total land use requirements for renewable energy:
    • Promotion of offshore wind
    • Rooftop solar, and solar on water bodies where net environmental benefits can be assured.
  • Optimising the identification and assessment of land for renewable generation:
    • Developing clear environmental and social criteria for rating potential sites.
    • Incentivising the selection of the highest ranked locations in tenders.
    • limiting undue regional concentration and supporting widely distributed renewable generation at a range of scales.
  • Increasing the stock of potentially suitable land for renewable generation:
    • Supporting a major expansion of agrivoltaics research
    • Incentivising agrivoltaics uptake where crops, soils and conditions are suitable and yields can be maintained or improved.

 

Forum for Decarbonizing Transport Project

 

 

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