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Hydroelectric power projects with 15 GW capacity underway

Utkarsh Classes Last Updated 06-04-2024
Hydroelectric power projects with 15 GW capacity underway Economy 4 min read

There are currently hydroelectric power projects being constructed in the country that, when completed, will have a combined capacity of 15 GW. By 2031-32, it is expected that the country's hydro capacity will increase from 42 GW to 67 GW. This represents an increase of more than half the current capacity.

  • The Indian Meteorological Department predicts higher rainfall this year. The temperature rise will increase the contribution of snowmelt to hydropower projects in the Himalayan region. 
  • Pumped Storage Projects (PSPs) are important to provide balancing power to the grid and currently, PSPs with an aggregate capacity of 2.7 GW are under construction, and another 50 GW is under development. PSP capacity is projected to increase from 4.7 GW to around 55 GW by 2031-32.

Fall in Hydro Power Generation in 2023-24

  • Hydropower generation in 2023-24 fell due to less rainfall and natural disasters. Low rainfall affected the southern region which contributes 22% of total hydro energy. 
  • Natural disasters impacted the Northern and Eastern regions which account for over 60% of hydro energy generation.
  • Flash floods in Himachal Pradesh and the Eastern region disrupted power stations, severely affecting generation. Hydrology is variable and past rainfall is not indicative of future rainfall patterns.

Possible Restoration of Water Reservoir Capacity

  • The Indian government is optimistic about future water levels, as a good monsoon in FY 2024-25 is predicted by IMD. This could replenish reservoir capacities lost during the scarce rainfall in the previous year. Additionally, the current downturn may be temporary.
  • Hydropower projects face issues like natural calamities, disputes, and geological surprises, resulting in slower capacity addition. However, the Indian government is striving for accelerated progress to achieve ambitious targets outlined in the Nationally Determined Contributions under the COP Paris Agreement.

India’s Renewable Energy Capacity

  • India has made significant progress in renewable energy, with 40.1% of its installed electricity capacity coming from non-fossil fuels. 
  • It has also fulfilled all commitments made on climate change at the COP21 Paris Summit and updated its Nationally Determined Contributions to include reducing emissions intensity, achieving 50% non-fossil fuel-based energy resources by 2030, and promoting a healthy and sustainable lifestyle. 
  • India is aiming to achieve a renewable energy capacity of 500 GW by 2030, with a transmission plan already in place and finalized bids for renewable energy capacity.


Answer: 15 GW

Answer: 42 GW to 67 GW
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