Well, for those in the wind industry, it is fairly well known that India is one of the hottest destinations for wind power, notwithstanding the fact that the growth in wind power installations in 2012 has been abysmal, mainly as a result of removal of AD (accelerated depreciation) ad GBI (generation based incentives).
But that has not deterred the financial investment bigwigs such as Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs and others to invest in India.
The private-equity division of Goldman Sachs has invested close to Rs 1,000 crore in ReNew Wind Power, which plans to develop 1,000 MW of renewable energy projects by 2015. Similarly, Morgan Stanley also picked up a stake in local wind energy company Continuum Energy recently for Rs 1,200 crore through its arm Morgan Stanley Infrastructure Partners. While these are investments into developers, significant interest is also shown in PE investments into OEMs. Examples are recent investment into ReGen Power and significant interest shown in Bharat Forge’s Kenersys.
To me, wind appears an excellent bet medium and long term. It is a mature technology, has reached grid parity in some places, and has decent PLFs for an intermittent renewable energy source (sometimes as high as 30%).
Well, of course, this is not baseload power, and it is not clear when wind or solar could actually compete with coal or gas head-on. But, in the context of a renewable energy resource, wind is as good a bet as any. And for all the ills plaguing the renewable energy domain, I dont see a future in which renewable sources do not play a big role in the energy mix.
This probably was the math that moved the likes of Sachs.