There are multiple agencies involved in the renewable energy sector in India. At the central level, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) is the nodal ministry of the Government of India (GoI). The broad aim of the ministry is to develop and deploy new and renewable energy for supplementing the energy requirements of the country.
The Ministry has set up three specialized technical institutions – National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE), National Institute of Wind Energy (NIWE), and Sardar Swaran Singh National Institute of Renewable Energy (SSS-NIRE). Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency Limited (IREDA) is a government owned company, registered as a non-banking financial company functioning under the administrative control of the MNRE.
Additionally RECI (Renewable Energy Corporation of India), erstwhile SECI (Solar Energy Corporation of India) will be Section 3 company under the Companies Act, 2013. The change took place for commercial purposes to facilitate growth of the company and will enable it to enlarge its scope of the activities to cover all renewable energy sources.
At the state level, there are nodal agencies and departments which operate under the purview of the respective state governments for the effective implementation of all renewable energy and cogeneration schemes. These agencies promote renewable energy deployment at the local level by channeling central-level subsidies, implementing demonstration projects, and providing assistance to interested parties.
Many of the state agencies are also designated agencies for the implementation of the Energy Conservation Act, 2001. The MNRE provides grants to these agencies for their recurring and non-recurring expenditure. Financial assistance to renewable energy projects is provided through the Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA) — the financial arm of the MNRE — which provides loans and also channels funds and other initiatives to promote renewable energy.
In addition, there are a number of government institutions whose mandate encompasses the renewable energy sector. For example, the Ministry of Power (MoP) is responsible for the national electricity policy and national tariff policy, both of which play a key role in promoting procurement of renewable energy-based power. The Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) is responsible for providing environmental clearances for renewable energy projects.
The Renewable Energy source based power generation capacity was 18 MW in 1990 with a slow rate of growth till 2008, however, 2008 onwards the progress in the made in the sector has been considerable. The driving factors for the renewable energy projects in India include demand/supply (low per capita consumption, large unelectrified areas; technology improvements and cost reduction in renewable technologies, entry of large number of players), policy (targets set under the NAPCC, JNNSM, fiscal and other incentives) and other issues (fuel challenges, and significant potential for renewable energy capacity addition) affecting conventional power generation.
Against this backdrop the renewable technologies are maturing in India and their growth in India in the last decade has been commendable.