World’s Largest Solar Field Switched on in India

NEW DELHI (AP) — The west Indian state of Gujarat is flipping the switch on Asia’s largest solar power field, as just part of its 600 megawatt solar energy addition to India’s power grid.

Workers install solar panels at India's Gujarat Solar Park. Authorities are switching on the solar power field as part of its solar power supply which will total 600 MW (Photo credit: AP).

The Gujarat Solar Park, spread across a desolate swath of desert, accounts for 214 MW of photovoltaic solar capacity, making it larger than China’s 200 MW Golmud Solar Park.

The project gives a serious boost to India’s renewable energy ambitions.

India aims for solar power to account for 3 percent of national capacity — or 1,000 MW — by 2013. Overall, it wants renewables to make up 15 percent of capacity by 2020, from 6 percent today.

Gujarat environment chief S.K. Nanda says the state is ideal for solar because of its sparsely populated desert in the north.