India just laid the foundations for what officials are claiming will be the world’s largest renewable energy park. The gigantic project, in the Kutch region of western Gujarat, will cover an area of 180,000 acres — an area roughly the size of Singapore, as Agence France-Presse reports.
Once finished, the park will produce 30 gigawatts of electricity from both wind turbines and solar arrays, thereby cutting carbon dioxide emissions by up to 50 million tons per year. For perspective, the protagonists in the 1985 film “Back to the Future” needed to generate a staggering 1.21 gigawatts of power to activate their time machine — and this new facility will produce more than 24 times that figure.
“The hybrid renewable energy park will be largest in the world and generate 30,000 megawatts of power,” prime minister Narendra Modi said during the park’s official inauguration, according to AFP.
Those figures dwarf the current largest solar farms in the world. India’s Bhadla solar park, which currently holds the title of the largest solar park in the world, produces just 2.245 gigawatts.
Australia has similar ambitions, with a plan to build the world’s largest solar farm, producing a planned 10 gigawatts of energy spread across an area the size of 20,000 football fields.
The Gujarat facility will be built next to a desalination plant that will process 100 million liters of water a day, enough for roughly 800,000 people.
According to AFP, India has an ambitious timeline for renewables. The country is planning to generate 175 gigawatts in renewable energy by 2022 and 450 gigawatts by 2030.
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