The Government proposes to tap the country’s solar and wind energy potential lying unexplored in the deserts. This was stated by Sh. Piyush Goyal, Minister of state for Power, Coal & New and Renewable Energy (Independent Charge) in a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha on 31st July 2014.
For this, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy had assigned a study to the Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd (PGCIL) to identify likely renewable power potential in desert regions in the states of Rajasthan (Thar), Gujarat (Rann of Kutch), Himachal Pradesh (Lahul & Spiti) and Jammu & Kashmir ( Ladakh). In December 2013, the PGCIL submitted a study report titled “Desert Power India- 2050” assessing renewable power potential, transmission infrastructure requirement, balancing reserve etc in the identified desert regions. The report has assessed a total available potential of 315.7 GW of solar and wind power in these regions. The report has further estimated that the investment requirement for harnessing the available potential upto 2050 would be ` 43,74,550 crores, the Minister added.