The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) and partners announced today the launch of a four year project to develop a roadmap for offshore wind development in India, with a focus on the states of Gujarat and Tamil Nadu.
Supported by a € 4 million contribution through the European Union’s Indo-European Cooperation on Renewable Energy programme, the project will work in close cooperation with the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, State governments and other relevant offices of the Indian government to look at the challenges and opportunities presented by offshore wind.
“The Offshore Wind Power Development project supported by European Union’s Indo-European Cooperation on Renewable Energy programme falls perfectly in line with the vision of the Government of India for development of offshore wind power in the country. The project is being launched when the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy is also working towards the introduction of National Offshore Wind Energy Policy in India,” said Alok Srivastava, Joint Secretary of the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy.
“We in Europe are committed towards reducing emissions and moving towards sustainable forms of energy, thereby lowering the dependency on fossil fuels and working towards a cleaner climate. This project on Wind energy in partnership with our Indian counterparts is driven by the same philosophy – secure, affordable and clean energy for all,” said Dr. João Cravinho, Ambassador of the European Union.
Globally, although onshore wind is now a mature, competitive and mainstream energy generation source, offshore wind is still in a relatively early stage of development. Most of the 6 GW of capacity installed is in the North Sea, Baltic and Irish Seas. The only other substantial market is in China, although there are exciting developments in Japan, Korea, Taiwan as well as early movement in the United States. As with all new technologies, the capital costs are high, and there is still a great deal of technical and management learning required to bring costs down to competitive levels. One of the goals of the project will be to learn as much as possible from the European experience to ensure that when India ventures offshore it does so in the most effective way possible.
“We look forward to working with our Indian and European partners to help fuel India’s development with clean renewable energy. We believe that with careful analysis and thorough preparation drawing on our global network, offshore wind can make a significant contribution to ensuring that clean energy plays the dominant role in supplying India’s growing energy needs,” said Steve Sawyer, GWEC Secretary General.
The partners bring a wealth of experience to the project: The World Institute for Sustainable Energy (WISE), based in Pune, will host the project management unit, and focus on the state of Gujarat; The Center for Study of Science, Technology and Policy (CSTEP), based in Bangalore will focus on the State of Tamil Nadu; DNV-GL, the world’s largest renewable energy consultancy, will, through its Bangalore based subsidiary, provide it’s long expertise in the offshore industry, as well as its experience in technology assessment, project design, due diligence and other areas; and we are pleased to have the support and participation of the Gujarat Power Corporation Limited.
The specific objectives of the project are to create an enabling environment for offshore wind through through resource mapping, policy guidance and capacity building measures, and to assess the inrastructure base and identify improvements required. In addition, the project will seek to build partnerships at a technical, policy and research level both within India and between India and EU companies, research groups and institutions, with a final goal of developing an Offshore Wind Outlook and development pathway for India up to 2032.
Press release, January 27, 2014; Image: Greenpeace