National Electricity Plan (NEP)

National Electricity Plan (NEP)

National Electricity Plan (NEP)

This article covers “Daily Current Affairs” and the topic details “National Electricity Plan (NEP)”. The topic “National Electricity Plan (NEP)” has relevance in the Environment section for the UPSC CSE exam.

Relevance of the topic “National Electricity Plan (NEP)”

For Prelims:
What is National Electricity Plan (NEP)?

For Mains:
GS 3: Environment
What are the components of the National Electricity Plan (NEP)?
What is the government’s emphasis on Energy Transition?
What are the targets and progress and progress made in the area of Energy Transition?
What are the issues with Energy Transition?
Way Forward

Why in the news?

The Central Electricity Authority (CEA) has notified the National Electricity Plan (NEP) (Vol-I Generation) for the period of 2022-32.

What is National Electricity Plan (NEP)?

The NEP in India is a crucial document that guides the development of the power sector in the country. It is formulated by the Central Electricity Authority (CEA), which is the apex statutory organization responsible for planning and coordination in the power sector.

The NEP is designed to assess the demand for electricity and plan the capacity addition required to meet that demand. It also aims to optimize the utilization of resources and coordinate the activities of various planning agencies. 

The plan provides:

  1. Review of the previous five years, 
  2. Capacity addition requirements for the upcoming five-year period
  3. Projections for a further 15-year period. (5+5+15)

What are the components of the National Electricity Plan (NEP)?

  1. Additional coal-based capacity: There is a requirement of adding coal-based capacity ranging from 17 GW to nearly 28 GW by 2031-32. This is in addition to the 25 GW of coal-based capacity that is already under construction.
  2. Investing in battery storage infrastructure: The draft plan estimates a need for between 51 GW to 84 GW of battery storage capacity by 2031-32. 
  3. Increase in Plant Load Factor(PLF): The NEP projects an increase in the Plant Load Factor (PLF) of coal-fired power plants. The PLF is expected to rise from 55% by 2026-27 to 62% by 2031-32.

What is the government’s emphasis on Energy Transition?

Green growth is an important pillar in India’s energy transition model. The government has formed a target of 500 GW of renewable energy to be produced by 2030.

  1. Setting up battery energy storage of 4,000 MwH through viability gap funding.
  2. National Green Hydrogen Mission launched on January 4, 2023, with an initial outlay of Rs 19,700 crore.
  3. Rs 35,000 crore for priority capital investment towards energy transition and net zero objectives.
  4. Rs. 70,000 crores for specific initiatives
    1. Rs.19,700 crores for Green Hydrogen, 
    2. Rs. 35000 crores for energy transition, 
    3. Rs. 20,700 crores for renewable energy evacuation. 

What are the targets and progress and progress made in the area of Energy Transition?

India has made significant progress in the area of energy transition in recent years. Some of the key developments include:

    1. Renewable Energy Capacity: India has announced that it aims to achieve net zero by 20270 as announced in COP-26. 
      1. India has set an ambitious target of achieving 500 GW of renewable energy capacity by 2030.
      2. As of 2021, India had installed more than 172 GW of renewable energy capacity, with solar and wind energy accounting for the majority of this capacity.
    2. Energy Efficiency: It means using the same energy source in such a way that the energy consumption is less and the savings are more. The government of India has implemented several energy efficiency measures such as:
      1. UJALA scheme provides energy-efficient LED bulbs at subsidised rates.
      2. Perform Achieve and Trade (PAT) scheme incentivizes industries to improve energy efficiency through incentive-based approach.
  • Solar and Wind policy.
  1. Electric Mobility: The government of India has launched several initiatives to promote electric mobility:
    1. Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles (FAME) scheme provides incentives for electric vehicle adoption.
    2. National Electric Mobility Mission Plan (NEMMP) to achieve 30% electric vehicle penetration by 2030.
  2. Policy Reforms: The Indian government has implemented several policy reforms to support the energy transition, such as:
    1. Competitive bidding for renewable energy projects, 
    2. Removal of subsidies on fossil fuels
    3. Implementation of a national carbon tax.
  3. International Cooperation: India has also engaged in international cooperation to support the energy transition, such as: 

International Solar Alliance and OSOWOG, which aims to promote solar energy adoption in developing countries.

What are the issues in the energy transition?

  • Technological Challenges
      • Development and deployment of new renewable energy technologies
      • Scaling up renewable energy to meet energy demands
      • Engineering and technical complexities in integrating renewable sources
  • Cost and Economics
      • Higher upfront costs of renewable energy compared to fossil fuels
      • Need for financial incentives and support mechanisms to bridge cost gap
      • Achieving cost competitiveness and improving financial viability of renewables
  • Grid Integration and Stability
      • Managing the intermittent nature of renewable energy sources
      • Development of advanced grid management systems
      • Energy storage solutions to balance supply and demand
  • Infrastructure and Planning
      • Upgrading energy infrastructure for renewable integration
      • Expanding transmission and distribution networks
      • Ensuring a smooth transition from fossil fuel-based infrastructure
  • Energy Storage
      • Developing cost-effective and efficient storage technologies
      • Balancing variable renewable energy generation with storage
      • Advancements in battery technologies and other storage solutions
  • Policy and Regulation
      • Supportive policy and regulatory frameworks for renewables
      • Setting renewable energy targets and financial incentives
      • Clear rules for grid integration and long-term policy stability
  • Employment and Just Transition
    • Addressing workforce implications in the fossil fuel industry
    • Retraining and job creation in the renewable energy sector
    • Supporting affected communities for a fair and equitable transition

Way Forward

There is a need for collaboration, innovation, research and development, supportive policies, and a long-term commitment to transitioning to a sustainable energy future.


plutus ias current affairs eng med 2nd June 2023


Q.1 Which of the following is NOT the challenge in transitioning from fossil fuels to non-fossil energy sources?

  1. Technological complexities in integrating renewable sources
  2. Low costs of renewable energy compared to fossil fuels
  3. Development of advanced grid management systems
  4. Stable and reliable supply of renewable energy at all times

Answer: (b)

Mains Question

  1. What is Energy Transition? Give an account of the issues involved and the related suggestions. 
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