india solar rooftop plant energy

A security guard walks amid a rooftop solar plant. Source: AP

India just built the world’s biggest solar power plant, knocking California off its throne

INDIA has just dethroned California’s Topaz Farm by building the world’s largest solar power plant.

As reported by The Next Web, the new 2,500-acre (10 kilometer square) facility has a capacity of 648 megawatts which is enough to supply power to over 150,000 homes. To draw comparisons to the former winner in the largest solar plant category, Topaz Farm can produce 550 megawatts.

Building India’s new plant was cost-efficient as well, as it took US$679 million and eight months to build compared to Topaz’ 2.5 billion and two years. The South Asian country has big solar industry ambitions, and with the announcement of its new plant, India is reportedly set to become the third-largest solar market globally – behind China and the U.S.

If you’re curious about what the plant looks like, watch this National Geographic documentary made about Adnani Group – the firm behind the project;

According to an A.T. Kearney report, India has been hedging its bets on solar since 2013, in the face of decreased coal and domestic gas supply and an increased focus on sustainability. In fact, India’s solar market is set to boom, and businesses are seeing lucrative opportunities as grid-connected solar generators could rake in as much as US$4 billion in yearly revenue.

After Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s push in 2015 on the International Solar Alliance (ISA), local entrepreneurs have already begun to work on solutions for the commercial and consumer space. The ISA is a framework that was launched at COP21 in Paris by Modi, which will give member states access to low cost financing and technology for solar projects. Since inception, 120 countries have joined the alliance.

With the government offering support to solar energy initiatives, opportunities are abound for startups looking to make their mark and perhaps even for green tech companies interested in the Indian market.