The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) has given the green light to the Green Energy Corridor (GEC) Phase-II – Inter-State Transmission System (ISTS) for a massive 13-gigawatt (GW) Renewable Energy (RE) project in Ladakh. This ambitious project is poised to reshape the renewable energy landscape in India.
Setting up 13 GW Renewable Energy in Ladakh
The project’s primary objective is to establish a colossal 13 GW renewable energy project in Ladakh, a region known for its complex terrain, harsh climatic conditions, and defense sensitivities. The Ministry of New & Renewable Energy (MNRE) revealed that the project has an estimated total cost of ₹20,773.70 crore. Central Financial Assistance (CFA) will cover 40 percent of the project cost, amounting to ₹8,309.48 crore.
Power Grid Corporation of India: The Implementing Agency
Given the unique challenges posed by Ladakh’s landscape and climate, the Power Grid Corporation of India (Power Grid) has been designated as the implementing agency for this monumental project. To ensure reliable and efficient transmission, state-of-the-art technology will be employed, including Voltage Source Converter (VSC) based High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) and Extra High Voltage Alternating Current (EHVAC) systems.
Transmission and Integration
The transmission line designed for evacuating the power generated by this project will traverse through Himachal Pradesh and Punjab before reaching Kaithal in Haryana, where it will seamlessly integrate with the National Grid. Furthermore, an interconnection is planned to connect this Ladakh project to the existing Ladakh grid, ensuring a stable power supply to the region
Enhancing Power Supply through a 713 km Transmission Network
Additionally, it will be linked to the Leh-Alusteng-Srinagar line to provide power to Jammu & Kashmir. This comprehensive approach encompasses 713 km of transmission lines, including a substantial 480 km of HVDC line, and the installation of 5 GW capacity HVDC terminals at both Pang (Ladakh) and Kaithal (Haryana).
A Step Towards Energy Security and Environmental Sustainability
The significance of this project extends beyond its impressive technical specifications. It plays a pivotal role in enhancing the long-term energy security of the nation and contributing to ecologically sustainable growth by substantially reducing the carbon footprint. By generating large employment opportunities for both skilled and unskilled workers, especially in the Ladakh region, it aligns with the broader vision of socioeconomic development.
An Additional Feather in the Cap
This project complements the ongoing Intra-State Transmission System Green Energy Corridor Phase-II (InSTS GEC-II), which is already in progress in states like Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, and Uttar Pradesh. The InSTS GEC-II scheme is dedicated to the integration of the grid and power evacuation of approximately 20 GW of renewable energy power and is anticipated to be completed by 2026.
This endeavor targets the addition of 10,753 circuit km (ckm) of transmission lines and 27,546 MVA capacity of substations, with an estimated project cost of ₹12,031.33 crore, supported by a CFA at 33 percent, amounting to ₹3,970.34 crore.