The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, led by the Prime Minister, has granted approval for the Green Energy Corridor (GEC) Phase-II – Inter-State Transmission System (ISTS) project. A press release on this initiative was issued on 18th October, 2023.
This initiative aims to support the development of a 13 GW Renewable Energy Project in the challenging terrain of Ladakh.
The project, with a target completion date set for FY 2029-30, comes with a total estimated cost of Rs. 20,773.70 crore. The Central Financial Assistance (CFA) will cover 40 percent of the project cost, totaling Rs. 8,309.48 crore.
Given the complex terrain, adverse climatic conditions, and defense sensitivities of the Ladakh region, the Power Grid Corporation of India Limited (POWERGRID) has been entrusted with the responsibility of implementing this ambitious project. Cutting-edge technology, such as the Voltage Source Converter (VSC) based High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) system and Extra High Voltage Alternating Current (EHVAC) systems, will be deployed to ensure efficient power transmission.
The transmission line to evacuate this power will traverse through Himachal Pradesh and Punjab, extending up to Kaithal in Haryana, where it will integrate with the National Grid. An interconnection is also planned from this project in Leh to the existing Ladakh grid, ensuring a reliable power supply to the Ladakh region. Additionally, it will connect to the Leh-Alusteng-Srinagar line, further providing power to Jammu & Kashmir. The project encompasses the establishment of 713 km of transmission lines, including a 480 km HVDC line, and two 5 GW capacity HVDC terminals at Pang (Ladakh) and Kaithal (Haryana).
This venture is a substantial stride toward reaching the target of 500 GW of installed electricity capacity from non-fossil fuels by 2030. It will enhance the country’s long-term energy security and promote ecologically sustainable growth by reducing the carbon footprint. The project is also expected to create a multitude of direct and indirect employment opportunities in the power and related sectors, especially in the Ladakh region, benefiting both skilled and unskilled workers.
It’s worth noting that this project is an addition to the Intra-State Transmission System Green Energy Corridor Phase-II (InSTS GEC-II), already under implementation in several states, including Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, and Uttar Pradesh. This existing scheme is focused on grid integration and power evacuation of approximately 20 GW of renewable energy and is projected to be completed by 2026. It involves the addition of 10753 ckm of transmission lines and 27546 MVA capacity of substations, with an estimated project cost of Rs. 12,031.33 crore and CFA at 33 percent, equivalent to Rs. 3970.34 crore.