Grid Connected Rooftop Solar PV Program: Environment and Social Systems Assessment - executive summary

Government of India (GoI) has set an ambitious goal of providing uninterrupted power for all homes, industrial and commercial establishments and adequate power for farmers by 2022 through its “24X7 Power for All program”. GoI wants a growing share of the country’s electricity to come from renewable energy. It aims to achieve a “solar revolution” by installing 100GW of solar power by 2022 - a thirty fold increase from 3.4 GW in early 2015. This includes an official target of installing 40GW of grid connected rooftop solar PV (GRPV) by 2022. This target supersedes and significantly increases the targets of 20GW of grid connected solar power that were initially set under the National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) and Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM). Together with large utility scale solar parks and ultra-mega solar projects, the government sees tremendous potential for generating decentralized and distributed solar power by utilizing the rooftops of industrial, commercial, residential and public buildings. The purpose of the Environmental and Social Systems Assessment (ESSA) is to: (i) review the environmental and social management rules and procedures and institutional responsibilities that are being used by the Program (ii) assess the implementing agency’s (SBI) institutional capacity and performance to date to manage potential adverse environmental and social issues under the Program; and (iii) recommend specific actions for improving the capacity of the SBI in regard to effective management of environmental, health and safety and social issues during implementation.