India shows commitment to clean energy with large solar power station. Julie Noce reports.
Sundown in Gujarat state in western India... previously, a time when residents put down their tools, and closed their school books. But thanks to the arrival of solar power, children continue their studies, and households hum with activity. Everyone has light, people are getting water, earlier we had none of this, this young girl says. The solar park has brought all these benefits. The Gujarat Solar Park, said to the be the biggest in Asia, supplies the state with power 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Spread over a 20 square kilometer area of arid land with undrinkable water, its turned a large swath of waste land into a productive potential money maker. Rajendra Mistri, the chief project officer at the park said the scale of the facility was attracting a lot of potential solar cell manufacturers for similar projects in other states. Mistri added that that the cost of clean energy would soon outweigh conventional forms of energy. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHIEF PROJECT OFFICER OF GUJARAT SOLAR ENERGY PARK, RAJENDRA MISTRI, SAYING: "We see that in future, because the conventional fuels are depleting at a very high rate, the cost of the fuel price will go up. At the same time the cost of the power generation from the solar will come down. So in the very near future, we see that there will be a price parity." Prime Minister Narendra Modi has set ambitious clean-energy targets that include raising solar capacity fivefold by 2022. India has promised to shave off a third off the rate at which it emits greenhouse gases over the next 15 years in a long-awaited contribution towards reaching a deal to slow global warming at the U.N. climate summit in December.