Bihar is eyeing an investment of Rs 20,000 crore in the renewable energy sector in the next five years to generate over 3,000 megawatts (Mw) of clean energy, officials on Thursday said in Patna.
The plan is part of the new renewable energy policy that aims to tap the potential of new and renewable sources of energy in the state.
"Bihar has witnessed phenomenal improvement in the power sector in the last few years. Now our focus is on renewable energy. The aim is to generate 3,433 Mw of clean energy by attracting an investment of Rs 20,000 crore," said R Lakshmanan, director of Bihar Renewable Energy Development Agency.
"Our major thrust will be on solar energy," he said while addressing a national conference on renewal energy 'Re-Powering Bihar: Energising Access and Opportunities' in Patna.
He pointed out that with Bihar's increasing population and rapidly growing economy, the state needs access to clean, cheap and reliable sources of energy.
Lakshmanan said the new renewable policy target is for installed capacity of 2,969 Mw solar, 244 Mw biomass and 220 Mw small hydropower in the next five years so as to meet the growing demand of power in an environmentally sustainable manner.
The conference on Thursday was organised by the Centre For Environment and Energy Development (CEED).
"The new Bihar renewable energy policy, 2017, paves the way for investment in clean energy and lays a foundation for lasting prosperity. The new policy is set to revolutionise the energy landscape of Bihar by 2022," CEED Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Ramapati Kumar said.
Ramapati said with a well-defined target, fixed timeline, emphasis on solar rooftops and decentralised renewable energy (DRE) systems, the agriculture sector will be transformed.
Most of the expected Rs 20,000 crore investment is likely to flow into setting up new manufacturing capacity in the state, for solar panels and other renewable energy equipments, skill developments, and research and development for sustainable clean energy, said Ramapati.
In a video message, state's Energy Minister Bijendra Prasad Yadav said it is time for organisations to invest in Bihar to accelerate the state's development.
"In today's time, we are rapidly moving towards de-carbonisation. We still rely on conventional sources of energy, mostly coal, to meet our energy demands. But the adverse effects of carbon emissions from these sources can be seen in the form of accelerated climate change and increase in frequency and severity of natural disasters."