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Asia Report: India's Wind Power Capacity Expected to Balloon by 2020, Says GWEC

India's installed wind power capacity is expected to reach 89 GW by 2020 and 191 GW by 2030, according to a new report. This expansion in wind power is expected to attract $16.5 billion of annual investment, create 179,000 jobs and abate 179 tonnes of CO2 annually, the Wind Energy Outlook reported.

“Power shortages and energy security are both critical issues for India’s rapidly growing economy,” said Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) secretary general Steve Sawyer. “Wind is already cost-competitive with heavily subsidized fossil fuel-based energy in several Indian states and its competitive position will only improve over time. But we need effective national energy policy, coordination with states, investments in the grid and policy stability for wind power to fulfill its potential in India.”

In 2011, India was the third largest wind power market – experiencing record annual growth in 2011 with the addition of more than 3 GW of new installations – after China and US, and fifth in overall cumulative installed capacity. The GWEC report shows its potential for wind power development reaches 400 GW and more if the potential of offshore wind and repowering are fully exploited.

Farooq Abdullah, renewable energy minister, said he hopes to make India a global leader in wind energy by adding around 30 GW of renewable power during the 12th Five Year Plan. Although India has made significant progress in renewable energy, and wind power in particular, it still has a long way to go.

"All favorable conditions in terms of potential, technical, support facilities, favourable policy and regulatory environment, robust manufacturing base, and investor's confidence are available for an accelerated growth of wind sector," he said at a conference.

The country faces challenges in meeting its energy needs and providing adequate and affordable energy to all sections of society. "With an energy demand supply gap of 8 percent, peak shortages to the order of 11-12 percent, and grid access not available to over 55 percent of the rural population, maximising the utilisation of renewable energy sources for providing energy access is imperative," Abdullah said.

IN THE NEWS

Yingli solar order: Sunnier days ahead? China’s Yingli is trying the good news-bad news approach to distract investors from its latest downbeat earnings, announcing its biggest-ever new order on the same day it released its dismal third-quarter results, Renewable Energy News reports. Yingli was selected to supply 200MW for LS Power’s 170 MW Centinela Solar Energy Facility Project, which is located 90 miles east of San Diego. Meanwhile, the company’s third-quarter revenue tumbled by nearly half to about $350 million, and its loss grew more than five-fold to more than $150 million. 

ReneSola expects positive margins on higher shipments, lower costs: ReneSola, one of the few US-listed Chinese solar panel makers to have escaped steep import duties, said it expected margins to turn positive in the current quarter as it cuts selling costs and ships more wafers and modules.

Vestas-Mitsubishi talks focus on biggest offshore turbine: Denmark’s Vestas is in talks with Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to build the biggest offshore turbine, bolstered by securing financing through 2015. Vestas chief financial officer Dag Andresen said the company was talking with Japan’s largest heavy-machinery maker about developing an 8 MW turbine, about 30 percent more powerful than the current record-holder.

China starts polysilicon dumping probe on US and European polysilicon: The Chinese government started investigating whether foreign suppliers of polysilicon are selling below cost in China, the world’s biggest consumer of the raw material used in making solar-energy devices. 

China Ming Yang and Reliance to raise $3 billion for India projects: China Ming Yang and India’s Reliance Power have reached an agreement with China Development Bank to raise $3 billion for new renewable energy projects in India. The bank will arrange funds after assessing plans by the two companies to build 2.5 MW of capacity in three years.

Australia’s Infigen backs solar power prospects over wind: Infigen Energy, the Australian developer better know for its wind projects, is set to centre its near-term focus on solar power rather than wind, managing director Miles George said. At the moment the company's solar push revolves around its 35MW Capital solar farm with China’s Suntech. The company will find out within six months if the project, which was part of its Solar Flagships proposal, will receive government funding.

Australia’s Senate throws out wind farm restrictions: Noise from wind farms is no different from other noise and calls for tougher planning regulations should wait for the release of a health impact review, an Australian Senate committee has found. The committee's report came as plans were unveiled to build the southern hemisphere's largest wind farm, in the path of the Roaring 40s on Tasmania's King Island.

A DEEPER LOOK 

Scientists edge closer to creating 'holy grail' of renewable energy world: Sophisticated and affordable battery technology remains one of the barriers to renewable energy being deployed on a much larger scale, writes Peter Hannam of Australia’s The Age. Only now are alternative battery technologies emerging from the laboratories despite decades of research in how to store energy.

Malaysia's example addresses urgency of climate change: Malaysia’s prime minister, Najib Razak, writes in The National that Malaysia understands how difficult it is to adapt to the new climate threat, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, while still pursuing economic development. The country is a major producer of clean energy products such as solar panels and efficient LED lighting, and it has introduced a feed-in tariff to boost domestic uptake of renewable energy.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

"The pledges and the commitments put by the developed country parties are far below that required by science and far below than what is required by their historical responsibility. Of course they need to increase their level of ambition.” — China's chief negotiator at Doha, Su Wei


IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Nov. 27-Dec. 3, 2012 Asia Report: China Dominates 2011 Global Wind Installations
Nov. 20-26, 2012 Asia Report: Another Week of Woe for China's Solar Panel Manufacturers

Nov. 13-19, 2012 Asia Report: Australia Lays Out 2050 Renewable Energy Vision

Nov. 3-12, 2012 Asia Report: Panasonic Freezesz Investment in Malaysia PV Manufacturing

Oct. 27-Nov. 2, 2012 Asia Report: Brightsource and Alstom Target Australia and India with New Funding

Oct. 19-26, 2012 Asia Report: First Solar Enters Nascent Indonesian Market with 100-MW Deal
Aug. 21-28, 2012 Asia Report: US Accused of Killing India's Solar Energy Industry
Aug. 6-20, 2012 Asia Report: South Korean Solar Companies Make Strong Push Into U.S. Market
July 23-Aug. 6, 2012 Asia Report: World Takes Hard Look at India Grid, Promises of Solar

Lead image: Wind turbines in India via Shutterstock

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Independent journalist with a background in sustainable business and ethical finance, the renewable and low-emission energy sectors, climate-change science and policy and the not-for-profit sector.

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