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      Electricity system based on 100% renewable energy for India and SAARC

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          Abstract

          The developing region of SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) is home to a large number of people living below the poverty line. In future, providing affordable, universally accessible, reliable, low to zero carbon electricity in this region will be the main aim. A cost optimal 100% renewable energy system is simulated for SAARC for the year 2030 on an hourly resolved basis. The region was divided into 16 sub-regions and three different scenarios were set up based on the level of high voltage direct current (HVDC) grid connections. The results obtained for a total system levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) showed a decrease from 71.6 €/MWh in a decentralized to 67.2 €/MWh for a centralized grid connected scenario. An additional scenario was simulated to show the benefits of integrating industrial gas production and seawater reverse osmosis desalination demand, and showed the system cost decreased by 5% and total electricity generation decreased by 1%. The results show that a 100% renewable energy system could be a reality in the SAARC region with the cost assumptions used in this research and it may be more cost competitive than nuclear and fossil carbon capture and storage (CCS) alternatives. One of the limitations of this study is the cost of land for installation of renewables which is not included in the LCOE calculations, but regarded as a minor contribution.

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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Role: InvestigationRole: MethodologyRole: VisualizationRole: Writing – original draftRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: Writing – original draft
                Role: MethodologyRole: Visualization
                Role: Funding acquisitionRole: MethodologyRole: Project administrationRole: SupervisionRole: ValidationRole: Writing – review & editing
                Role: Editor
                Journal
                PLoS One
                PLoS ONE
                plos
                plosone
                PLoS ONE
                Public Library of Science (San Francisco, CA USA )
                1932-6203
                19 July 2017
                2017
                : 12
                : 7
                Affiliations
                [1 ] Lappeenranta University of Technology, Lappeenranta, Finland
                [2 ] Indian Institute of Technology (BHU), Varanasi, India
                University of Liverpool, UNITED KINGDOM
                Author notes

                Competing Interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

                Article
                PONE-D-16-37058
                10.1371/journal.pone.0180611
                5516989
                28723937
                © 2017 Gulagi et al

                This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

                Page count
                Figures: 10, Tables: 4, Pages: 27
                Product
                Funding
                Funded by: funder-id http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/501100003406, Tekes;
                Award ID: 40101/14
                Funded by: funder-id http://dx.doi.org/10.13039/501100006276, Fortums Stiftelse;
                Award Recipient :
                The authors gratefully acknowledge the public financing of Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation, for the ‘Neo-Carbon Energy’ project under the number 40101/14. The first author would like to thank Fortum Foundation for the valuable scholarship.
                Categories
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                Electricity
                Engineering and Technology
                Energy and Power
                Alternative Energy
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                India
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                All relevant data are within the paper and its Supporting Information files.

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