It seems like every week that there is news about how India is pushing forward with various aspects of their renewable energy plan. By all accounts, the nation is sparing no expense when they can and have been seriously investing in any form of renewable energy they can manage. While the usefulness of solar energy and wind power is apparent to those working on renewable energy in the Indian government, some of the latest news is showing that they are starting to show interest in going offshore.
According to Deepak Gupta, the Secretary of the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, India is currently preparing to begin a study to determine whether or not offshore wind power would be a feasible way of generating renewable energy for India. The study, which is being done with the Centre for Wind Energy Technology, is expected to take approximately two to three years and may be the determining factor in whether or not India decides to pursue offshore wind power. The study will be focusing on finding the best areas to install offshore wind power based off of the wind patterns, sea-bed quality, soil samples, and the average amount of storms each part of the Indian coastline suffers from over time.
So far, the researchers in charge of the study believe that India’s west coast will be ideally suited to establishing offshore wind power based renewable energy systems. As a part of the process, the Centre for Wind Energy Technology will be working with various wind power technology companies like Vestas and General Electric in order to determine exactly what kind of turbines would be suitable if eventually placed in offshore wind farms.
Currently, India ranks fifth in the world for installed wind power but had yet to approach offshore wind power as a viable means of renewable energy generation before now. In the end, however, going for offshore wind power could end up being one of the best decisions the Indian government makes for their energy policy. As they have tried to expand, the Indian government has been having issues with finding affordable plots of land with enough space to easily accommodate a growing wind or solar energy farm. If they can find just the right way to invest in offshore wind power, then the expansion into the ocean would prove far easier and leave India in a situation that could potentially allow them to begin a wind power leader not only in the region but possibly in the whole world.
Overall, the situation looks hopeful for India in pursuing this new form of renewable energy. The amount of power generation that would be added once they decide to start building offshore would be immense and will most likely lead to some positive renewable energy change across the country.
Article by Richard Cooke, appearing courtesy Justmeans.
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It is indeed a glad and welcome move that MNRE has finally announced the study. Panchabuta has been talking about this from early May and it is high time we did the study given the recent problems in India with respect to land acquisition for Wind Energy. This has not been an issue at least with respect to wind so far.
The bigger challenge is going to be offshore as there are very stringent coastal regulations in India and there does not exist any law to owning and operating of assets out of the coastal regulatory zone. Such clearances so far require permission from port authorities.
Another important point is that there should be some inclusion for offshore wind in the next plan period (Twelfth Plan – 2012-17).
Panchabuta has discussed these issues in detail in its renewable and cleantech essays on wind energy in India.
A startup from Goa India is all set to make a major difference in the micro wind sector in India, they will introduce various models of VAWT’s for use in urban India. Checkout their website at http://www.energyexcess.com There are to introduce shortly free plans to light up rural India…
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