Developing innovative new solar areas

Project description

Title: Innovative New Solar Areas
Commissioned by: Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: India
Overall term: 2021 to 2024

Vertical Agro PV site in Donaueschingen. Photo: GIZ


The Government of India has set an ambitious target of achieving carbon neutrality by the year 2070. To succeed, India will need an estimated 1,689 gigawatts (GW) of solar capacity by 2050 and 5,630 GW of solar capacity by 2070. This, however carries along two major challenges.

  • Presently, the major contributors of solar PV installations across India are ground-mounted or rooftop installations. These conventional methods of solar adoption rely heavily on land utilisation and can only address the target in part.
  • Additionally, land use for energy generation is increasingly facing competition from other social or economic usages that directly affect natural habitats and ecosystems. There are also growing concerns about the scarcity of utilisable land being allocated for solar projects.

This makes it necessary to explore new innovative technology solutions for solar PV projects in India.


India is improving its regulatory, technological and distributional conditions concerning land requirements for the expansion of climate-friendly production of solar energy.

An Agri-PV installation in Althegnenberg. Photo : GIZ


The project works in the following areas to meet its target of 450 GW by 2030:

  • Shortlisting together with the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) seven new and innovative solar PV applications (NISAs) for further proliferation. Their potential has been accessed across India by developing a GIS-based online atlas (Solar Technology Application Atlas of India - STAAI)
  • The MNRE has invited applications for pilot demonstrations of NISAs. Of 83 proposals received, three were selected for pilot implementation, including vertical bifacial panel installation, building-integrated solar system (BIPV) installation and green hydrogen production
  • Additionally, the GIZ project team’s “RE Cities” activity supported four cities in their development to become cities that are powered with renewable energy (RE) by 100 per cent. GIZ also provides consultancy and support to promote new and innovative solar PV applications in the existing identified and future RE cities.

Last update: March 2023

A noise barrier integrated with PV on a section of highway. Photo : GIZ