How does India produce renewable energy

India wants 140 gigawatts of wind power - but also 40 new coal mines

Nicole Weinhold

India's energy needs are expected to double over the next decade. As a main topic at Windernergy Hamburg from December 1st to 4th, 2020, India has a rosy perspective when it comes to wind expansion. According to GWEC's 2019 annual report, the subcontinent is the fourth largest onshore wind market in the world with a total installed capacity of 37.5 GW. The Indian government has set itself the goal of increasing the total installed capacity of wind energy to 60 GW by 2022 and to 140 GW by 2030. During 2019, India was Asia's second largest wind market with 2.4 GW of new installed capacity; in the onshore market, the country achieved fourth place with 3.9 percent of all new installations worldwide.

40 new coal mines

That sounds good at first. But there is also a downside. 40 new coal mines are planned. The country's electricity supply is largely based on coal. Giant coal projects in the center and east of the country are part of the corona reconstruction program launched by the government. In June, the government started auctioning the planned mining areas, thus opening the previously state-owned coal mining industry to the private sector. Critics accuse Premier Modi of playing the great environmental champion, but at the same time completely softening environmental laws and regulations. India is the second largest coal consumer in the world after China and imported around 250 million tons of the climate-damaging fuel annually in the pre-Corona times.

Wind expansion slowed due to Corona

At the same time, like China, the country is relying on the increasingly cheaper renewables. In the first quarter of 2020, however, only 189 MW of wind power went online. The experts are not particularly optimistic for the rest of 2020 either, because at least two months that are important for wind turbine installations have been lost due to the COVID-19 curfew. The beginning monsoon season is not well suited for the implementation of projects.

On the positive side, Indian insiders are currently seeing a boom in the export of important components such as gearboxes for supplying large wind markets, especially in the USA. The trade conflict between the US and China is seen as another factor benefiting Indian companies.

In addition, the economic stimulus package is not only intended to promote coal; the announced elimination of upper supply limits in future tenders by the Indian Ministry of New and Renewable Energies (MNRE) should also have a win-win situation, according to property developers. It is assumed that the reorientation away from fixed upper supply limits and towards purely market-oriented tendering procedures without artificial restrictions and with presumably better prices will further strengthen the demand for property developers.

Low wind turbines

Apart from areas with stronger winds along the east coast and in the state of Gujarat, the subcontinent is a typical weak wind market in accordance with IEC III and IV Nominal outputs from two to three MW, with the trend towards higher outputs and larger rotor diameters. The localization of production is an important topic and a key success factor for suppliers in India. Many German and foreign exhibitors at Windenergy Hamburg - including some from India - are active members of the rapidly expanding supply chain for gearboxes, generators, cast parts, bearings and rotor blades. Components manufactured in India are increasingly being exported all over the world.

Siemens Gamesa operates four plants in India

“Siemens Gamesa operates four plants in India that currently have an order book with a total nominal output of 6,500 MW, that is 17 percent of the total order backlog in India. SGRE's Indian plants are mainly dedicated to meeting increasing domestic demand. SGRE India also supplies other markets around the world, including Europe, Mexico and Sri Lanka, ”emphasizes Navin Dewaji, CEO of SGRE India.

ZF Wind Power and Winergy are two prime examples of gearbox manufacturing in India for local and global markets. According to its own information, Winergy has been supplying the Indian market from Germany since 1994. Since 2005, all leading wind turbine suppliers have been supplied with gearboxes for the national market from the Chennai plant. Since then, with the increasing demand, the company has continuously expanded its manufacturing and construction capacity. Winergy India's gearbox portfolio, which is still primarily intended for the two MW wind turbine class, is also partially exported.

. The comprehensive program including the “Insight” stages “Power4Climate” and “Empowering People” will be designed by WindEurope, the co-organizer of WindEnergy Hamburg. The GWEC is a global partner and presents "Global Business Insights". WindEnergy Hamburg 2020 was originally planned from September 22 to 25, 2020 and was postponed to December 1 to 4, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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