Tata Power to invest around Rs5,000 cr in wind energy by 2017

Tata Power to invest around Rs5,000 cr in wind energy by 2017

Mumbai: Tata Power aims to have at least a 25% of its power generation or around 8,000 MW from clean sources of energy by 2017 and will invest around Rs5,000 crore in wind energy alone, a top company official said.

“We have set ourselves a target to achieve 25% of our total generation from clean sources by 2017. These will comprise wind, solar, hydro, geo-thermal and gas. In wind power alone, we will be investing around Rs5,000 crore," Tata Power’s executive director-strategy & business development, Banmali Agrawala, told PTI in Mumbai.

The company, which presently has a little over 200 MW of wind capacity, plans to give a strong thrust to wind-energy as “it is the most commercially viable and established form of renewable energy," he said.

The company is presently in the process of rolling out 150 MW and an additional 750-800 MW will be added at the rate of around 100-150 MW annually by 2017.

It costs around Rs6 crore for generating 1 MW of wind power presently, Agrawala said.

In solar, the company aims to have 300-400 MW capacity by 2017. The first steps will be taken by the year-end with the commissioning of a 3 MW plant at Mulshi in Maharashtra, he said.

Tata Power is also all set to sign a power purchase agreement (PPA) with the Gujarat government for a 25 MW plant to be commissioned by end-2011.

“This plant will be set up in Mithapur on land owned by Tata Chemicals and we hope to sign the PPA by end-this month," Agrawala said.

In geo-thermal, Tata Power is already engaged in a 240 MW project in Indonesia in a joint venture with Origin of Australia, which it plans to commission in five years.

Tata Power and Origin hold a 47.5% stake each with the balance held by a local company.

“We are eyeing another 600-700 MW in Indonesia and also other markets with a good geo-thermal potential by 2017. Apart from Indonesia which lends itself to geo-thermal, we feel there is a great potential in Africa and we plan to scout for assets there as well," Agrawala said.

It costs around $3.5 million to generate 1 MW of geo-thermal power and while Agrawala did not give any investment figure, going by the above, it could entail a total investment of between Rs8,500-9,000 crore for the 600-700 MW.

“We would like to work with our partner, not only in Indonesia but also in other markets as well," he said.

For gas-based power, Tata Power has applied for gas allocation, he said, adding that the company possesses the expertise in this field and has also zeroed-in on potential sites.

“We are presently fine-tuning our plans here," he said.

“Pricing of gas is still an issue and there needs to be a greater clarity on policies. Once these issues are sorted out, we will go full-steam ahead on gas," Agrawala said.

On hydro, in which the Tata group has been present for nearly a century, the company is contemplating bidding for a clutch of projects in Himachal Pradesh, Tata Power’s executive director-operations, S Padmanabhan, said.

Tata Power, which now has a capacity of 447 MW in hydro, is presently engaged in constructing a 114 MW plant in Bhutan in a joint venture with the Bhutanese government. It is also developing a 800 MW plant in Nepal in a joint venture with Norway’s SN Power.