Wind Power Has Huge Potential but Entrepreneurs Face Challenges in Funding for Wind Power Projects

25th Feb 2011
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IWTMA has launched a Masters program in wind production to make wind power a career option for students

 

The fast depleting fossil resources and carbon footprint resulting from the use of environmental-unfriendly materials have necessitated the search for renewable sources of energy. Tapping of natural solar and wind resources and generating power from them provides a viable and sustainable alternative to the existing fossil resources.

The Government of India has set a target of 15% from renewable energy to the national electric grid by 2020. The National Action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) announced by the government recommended a 5% contribution to the national grid by 2009-10 and an incremental 1% contribution every year to reach 15% by 2020. The cumulative installed capacity of wind power as on December 2010 stands at 13 GW (or 13,000 MW). The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) estimates that the installed capacity will reach 64 GW (64,000 MW) by 2020. The World Institute of Sustainable Energy (WISE), based in Pune, predicts that the market for wind power will reach 5000 MW by 2015 and stands at 2200 MW at present.

Tamil Nadu contributes 52% of the nation’s wind power installed capacity. “Tamil Nadu has the potential to generate 13,000 MW,” said Ramesh Kymal, CMD, Gamesa, addressing a press conference in connection with WIND POWER INDIA 2011 (www.windpowerindia.in). But finding funding for wind power projects by entrepreneurs is challenging, felt Mr. Kymal. He added that “If the funding is changed from balance sheet based funding to project based funding, it will be good.”

G. V. Pillai, founder director of WISE, said, “If wind industry growth rate continues at average 16% from now till 2020, then capacity (wind power) of 50,000 MW can be added by 2020.” On the focus of WIND POWER INDIA 2011, Mr. Pillai added: “The conference will highlight key policy and regulatory issues such as generation-based incentives, renewable energy certificates, policy framework for offshore, etc., thus bringing in all the policy makers on a single platform.”

V Subramanian, Former Secretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Govt. of India said that “In the last 5 years, Wind energy has supplied more power to the grid than nuclear”, adding that “State governments support with regard to policy, regulation, operational issues of connecting power to the grid are the key challenges”

D V Giri, Chairperson, The Indian Wind Turbine Manufacturers’ Association (IWTMA) said that “Each MW needs 20 people and 50,000 MW will generate 1 million jobs (direct and indirect) being created.” For creating necessary talent in the sector, Mr. Giri added: “IWTMA has launched a Masters program in wind production to promote wind energy as a career option. Two colleges in Tamil Nadu have already been partnered for the same - PSG College, Coimbatore & Amrita College, Coimbatore. 75% of the students will be absorbed by member companies.”

WISE brings out a free magazine Green Energy to create awareness about renewable energy sector in India. Write to communications@wisein.org for your copy.

--Venkatesh Krishnamoorthy, chief evangelist, YourStory.in

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