Wind generation falls over 40% in July; initial assessment blames low wind speed

India’s wind energy generation capacity fell by a whopping 43% in July, taking the industry by surprise as the monsoon months are the most optimal for generation every year, official data showed.

Overall renewable energy generation is 24% less than July last year. Provisional renewable energy generation capacity for July is at 12,242 million units (MU), down from 16,177 MU in 2019. Wind has seen the biggest drop, from 11,343 MU last year to 6,490 MU in 2020.

Overall power generation between April and July has also fallen year-on-year, from 52,421 MU in 2019 to 50,550 MU in 2020, according to data from the Central Electricity Authority (CEA).

The monsoon months between June and September are the chief wind power generating months, providing nearly 85% of the annual output, according to industry estimates. At around 120 days, this window is much shorter than that of solar, which typically remains productive for at least 280 days in a year.

Industry insiders have said that wind speeds have been exceptionally low this year, but would likely pick up in August and September. The central government has taken note of the issue and begun seeking details from states and developers about the alarming drop, according to sources. They said capacity addition in wind has been less at 2,000 MW so far this year while in solar it has been 8,000 MW till June this year.

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