The Asian Development Bank will make available US$1 billion to build and upgrade high voltage transmission lines and substations in Rajasthan and Punjab states, as part of the Indian government’s Green Energy Corridor initiative.
ADB will provide a US$500 million government-backed loan and a further US$500 million in non-sovereign lending to India’s national transmission company, Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd.
To increase energy delivery from India’s west to southern region, the project will also include new high-voltage direct current terminals in Chhattisgarh, Tamil Nadu, and Kerala states, boosting interconnectivity between the regions from about 10 gigawatts to 16 GW.
India is promoting the increased use of clean and renewable energy to meet growing power demand, provide universal electricity access, and increase energy self-sufficiency. Earlier this year, India announced ambitious plans to achieve a national renewable energy target of 175 GW by 2022.
About 90% of this is expected to be generated from solar and wind sources which are concentrated in a few Indian states. Investment in efficient, inter-state transmission infrastructure that can address the intermittency and timing differences of renewable energy is therefore critical in supporting expansion and optimal use of renewable energy in India.
“The new transmission lines connecting renewable energy-rich areas to the national grid will enhance connectivity between the regions by bringing clean energy to more people, making the overall Indian power system more efficient, and improving India’s overall energy security,” said Hun Kim, Director General of ADB’s South Asia Department.