India – Suzlon and wind energy II

Indian wind-energy firm Suzlon and a top Indian businessman's foray into tapping wind energy

While Hansen will be run as an independent business unit, the acquisition will allow Suzlon to integrate gearbox technology into its wind-turbine solutions, creating a more reliable and competitive product. In the past Tanti has stated that India loses 45,000MW of power daily because of the untapped potential of wind energy. Suzlon, now India's leading manufacturer of wind-turbine generators, was a relatively unknown company just two years ago, privately held by the erstwhile textile-producing Tanti family, Gujaratis who have made Pune their home. The firm went public last year, and its market capitalization now stands at $8.4 billion, with the family stake amounting to $5.6 billion. Suzlon has also been trying to sell wind energy to India's corporate sector as a low-cost alternative. The company has persuaded firms such as Bajaj Auto, Godrej Group, MSPL Ltd, Ramco Group, Alembic, Bannari Amman group and a large number of textile units in Tirupur to try wind energy.

Others also have plans in place. The state-run Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL) in Mumbai has identified seven sites in Maharashtra and Karnataka for its wind-energy projects and aims to generate 500MW in the next three to four years. State energy giant Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and Reliance Energy Ltd (REL) have announced plans to invest in wind energy. ONGC is developing projects across six states, while REL is planning projects in coastal states including Karnataka. Nuclear Power Corp of India Ltd is setting up a windmill project near its nuclear power plant in Kudankulam, Tamil Nadu, to generate 50MW of wind power that will be used by the plant. More than 400 windmills have been set up in the desert city of Jaisalmer, collectively producing 150MW of power. Consumers in Jaisalmer pay Rs3.25 (7.3 cents) per unit of power, which is one of the lowest power tariffs in the country.

Indeed, there is money to be made in renewable energy, as the potential for expansion is quite large. The Planning Commission, in its draft integrated energy policy, has estimated power-generation-capacity requirements reaching 627,088MW in the year 2031, far beyond the present capacity of 130,000MW. India's largely indigenous (so far, that is) nuclear power program aims to generate 20,000MW of power by 2020, up from current levels of close to 3,500MW. It is estimated that wind, small hydroelectric and biomass sources have the potential to generate 80,000MW in India altogether.
Online editorial www.windfair.net
Edited by Trevor Sievert, Online Editorial Journalist
wind energy, wind farm, renewable energy, wind power, wind turbine, rotorblade, offshore, onshore

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