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Energy Alternatives India 22nd Feb, 2010

Here's our next edition of EAI Newsletter. For more news items and updates, visit our blog @ http://www.eai.in/blog and our forum @ http://www.eai.in/forum


Jatropha Comprehensive Report

Jatropha is a biofuel crop with high potential. At the same time, there is a lot of hype around the crop, making it difficult for entrepreneurs and investors to take correct business decisions. The Jatropha Comprehensive Report will now assist you distinguish hype from reality for the Jatropha industry. More from here - http://www.biozio.com/ref/report/jat/jatropha_biodiesel.html


Renewable Energy and the Indian Battery Industry

The last weekend was great - not because I was enjoying myself on a pleasure trip, but because I spent many hours on Saturday and Sunday interacting with dozens of people from the Indian battery industry.

EAI was the knowledge partner for Alten 2010 ( http://www.alten.in - an expo and seminar on alt energy and energy storage ), and we thus had the unique opportunity to interact with a wide spectrum of people from the battery industry in specific and energy storage industry in general.

It was also useful to be part of two panels - one in which I was a speaker and another in which I was a moderator. Notably, I was able to interact with some of the movers - John Abraham of Sunborne Energy ( http://sunborneenergy.com ) who are putting up solar CSP plants in India, and executives from Senergy ( http://www.senergyglobal.com ) and Emergent Ventures ( http://www.emergent-ventures.com/ ), both the companies playing a prominent role in developing CDM in India.

Those meetings were on Saturday. Sunday was an even better day. Myself and one of my colleague spent over three hours at the exhibition where about one hundred battery, inverter and UPS suppliers had gathered. I was keen to learn from them their perspectives on the opportunities in the Indian renewable energy industry.

I was under the assumption that most of these companies had not much of a clue about the opportunities in this emerging industry. Most likely, I thought, they will be way too focussed on the existing, huge demand for their products from the conventional segments than to concern themselves with uncertain and presently small renewable energy segment.

I'm glad to report that I was quite wrong. Most - if not all - the companies I spoke to already had started making some plans for adding value to the various renewable energy segments. Some companies - Truepower, for example with its solar/grid hybrid inverters - were already supplying unique products and services to the renewable energy segment. Others - Bindal Batteries, for one - had already been successful in extending their product lines to capture significant shares for batteries in solar PV based products such as mini solar plants and solar pumps. The telecom market was another area where some of these companies were doing well.

Not surprisingly, most interest was for the solar PV segment. Interestingly, many of the companies that were exploring the solar PV segment were not just looking at supplying batteries to this segment, but also to provide end-to-end solutions to end users - in terms of supplying them with the complete set comprising solar panels, inverters, batteries and charge controllers. Excepting the panels, most of the products could be produced by the companies themselves (one company even plans to manufacture the solar powered street lamps and LED lights).

As had already been realized by my team, the companies also had realized that their batteries will have little role to play in the utility-scale solar PV power plants. The reason simply put, is cost. Including batteries will increase the cost of power generation by 50-100% for solar plants, and by over 200% for wind plants. One cannot expect these to start using batteries in a big way, at least for the next 2-4 years.

Batteries will find tremendous growth from the non-grid segment - be they households, apartments or factories using solar or solar/wind hybrid for captive power consumption. This fact was not lost on those I met yesterday.

All in all, it was a great couple of days at Delhi, thanks to the Alten organizing committee (the expo / seminar was done by VNS Expo Design, Delhi). I understood the Indian battery industry from close quarters, and am hoping that this learning will serve me and my other colleagues at EAI well.

Hope you are liking our EAI newsletter. You can send me your responses and feedback. My co-ordinates are provided below.

Have a nice day!

Narasimhan Santhanam
EAI - Energy Alternatives India @ www.eai.in
Mob: +91-98413-48117
Email : narsi@clixoo.com


Market Entry Strategy for Indian Renewable Energy Industry

Is your company keen on exploring the fast-growing renewable energy industry in India? Are you looking for expertise to evolve a comprehensive entry strategy for this industry? You should be talking to the EAI Consulting Team. More from here - http://www.eai.in/ref/services/ime_consulting.html


Updates on the latest in the Indian renewable energy industry

Govt steps up drive to make office buildings green - In two years, Indira Paryavaran Bhawan, which comes under the Ministry of Environment and Forests and being constructed over a 9,000-sq mt plot at Aliganj in Delhi, will be showcased as the government’s drive to set up green buildings. And this will be just the beginning, says this article - http://bit.ly/dtcTYx - Yes, I like it!

Power projects based on biomass to generate employment in rural areas: Dr. Abdullah - Union New and Renewable Energy Minister Dr. Farooq Abdullah on Friday laid the foundation stone for two power projects based on biomass in Punjab. These are namely, 10 MW biomass power plant at village Binjon in Hoshiarpur district and 14.5 MW plant at village Channu in Muktsar district - http://bit.ly/dl2kmp - That is a good start. Expect a lot more action in biomass-based power, folks!

Rice husk-based power units to be promoted by MNRE - http://bit.ly/dtVQVo - Another useful idea worth exploring.

L&T plans big play in wind, hydro power generation - MUMBAI: L&T is going in for a major change in its energy business focus. The country’s largest engineering company, which is mainly identified with large, thermal-fired power projects — virtually almost every power plant in India was built by L&T — is going green by venturing into wind and hydro power generation. The Mumbai-based company has prepared a road map for building wind power projects in Gujarat, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu for captive use. In addition, it is also investing around Rs 8,000 crore for setting up 700-800 MW of hydro power projects in Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Arunachal Pradesh, according to a senior executive. The projects would go on stream in the next four-five years. http://bit.ly/9F2jrw - So what's so surprising about this?

US NREL to partner India's solar energy centre - The US National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) will partner with India's Solar Energy Centre to develop a comprehensive nation-wide map of solar energy potential. More than two dozen US and Indian cities will partner to promote solar energy development, US Consul General in Kolkata, Beth A Payne told a seminar on Global Climate Change here today - http://bit.ly/9F2jrw - NREL is one institution that has done some sterling work in the area of renewable energy, so this is a welcome and much-needed partnership


Enexions - Enabling sustainability

Enexions helps you take sustainabe actions everyday and lead sustainable lifestyles. Use the simple Enexions Update and Enexions Diaries to join the sustainability movement, and share and network with like-minded folks in your city and worldwide. More from here - http://www.enexions.com

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