He said 722 companies have so far registered for setting up of solar power projects, with a cumulative capacity of 16,900 mw. Including the projects already registered and the additional projects proposed, the sector is expected to attract investments to the tune of Rs 16,000 crores, he added.
Gehlot further said Rajasthan enjoys many advantages in solar energy generation with abundant land availability, availability of solar radiation at 6-7 kWh/m2 and availability of raw material used in the solar energy sector - zinc, molten salt and solar glass.
Union minister for new & renewable energy Farooq Abdullah, the chief guest of the occasion, drew attention to the need for research and development to give a push to the sector. "Investment and research in solar energy sector is a must as renewable energy can help preserve the global ecological balance," he said. He appealed to the overseas Indian diaspora to look at investments in generating capacities and R&D and added that the sector offers good potential for profits.
Praising the efforts of government of Rajasthan on renewable energy, Abdullah said Rajasthan has huge potential for solar energy. Solar energy is already playing a vital role in Ladakh in street lighting, illustrating the solar energy potential of the deserts.
Vayalar Ravi, Union minister for overseas Indian affairs, said energy is the real force behind any development. He highlighted the advantages of solar energy especially in satisfying the basic requirements of rural India, generating employment opportunities and preventing migration to the cities.
Deepak Puri, co-chairman of CII national committee on renewable energy, and & chairman, Moser Baer India, pointed out that 60% of rural households in India do not have access to electricity he urged for innovative models such as pay-per-use model and community charging to make solar energy popular and available to all.
Source- Times of India