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Renewable Energy Growth in India: A Multi-Criteria Model to Evaluate and Rank Renewable Energy Sources Applicable to Decentralized Energy Generation for Mini-Grids

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India meets close to 65% of its electricity needs from fossil fuels and is expected to continue doing so in the foreseeable future. This poses questions on cost of electricity supply, environmental impacts and energy security. At this juncture, Renewable Energy is being seen as one of the important means to meet the growing power needs while enhancing energy security through diversifi cation of fuel sources and providing opportunities for mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. India has vast renewable energy potential through wind, solar, biomass etc. Off grid renewable energy technologies satisfy energy demand directly and avoid the need for long distribution infrastructures. There is growing interest today to find an ideal energy source that would be most appropriate choice for off grid energy generation.

The objective of this work was to develop a comprehensive multicriteria, evaluation scheme for prioritizing Renewable Energy Generation Sources (RES). It includes a comparative analysis of energy development priorities using Analytic Hierarchy Process and Fuzzy Logic to evaluate renewable energy sources- photovoltaic, wind energy, mini hydro, geothermal and biomass. A comprehensive evaluation criterion was established to consider environmental and cost aspects. The method can adequately be incorporated in a broader evaluation framework for supporting decision makers in the volatile energy domain.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 February 2016

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