Geothermal, wave and tidal power technologies have been ignored by the Indian government’s ambitious plans for renewable energy capacity expansion. These technologies remain relatively less tested and expansive than others like solar and wind energy.
The Indian government may soon implement a policy to promote geothermal power technology. The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has floated a draft policy for large-scale development of geothermal power projects in the country.
The policy calls for installed geothermal power capacity of 1 GW by 2022 which will then be increased to 10 GW by 2030. The policy also calls for partnership with US, Philippines, Mexico and New Zealand which have some experience in development and operation of geothermal power projects.
Geothermal power potential in India remains largely untapped. While MNRE has taken some measures to promote geothermal power technology but none sustained over a longer period of time.
Few years back, MNRE commissioned a research, development and demonstration program involving geothermal energy. The program aimed at locating the potential geothermal energy exploration sites in several states across the country.
The program covered states like Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand. Many of these states have confirmed the identification of geothermal potential sites. Some of the most active geothermal sites are believed to be located in Jammu & Kashmir with significant resources potentially present in Himachal Pradesh and in central India.
Some Indian companies, like Tata Power and Thermax, had tied up with international companies possibly to get access to technology but those agreements are yet convert into real project development.