The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) is setting up a branch in India to work with government and stakeholders to renew momentum around wind power development.
GWEC India, which also aims to support the country in achieving its 175GW renewable energy target by 2022, will focus on building out India’s huge potential and local supply capacity, address regulatory bottlenecks, share best international practices and experience, and facilitate dialogue and cooperation between government and industry stakeholders.
In order to meet the clean power target current wind capacity needs to nearly double within the next two years, totalling 60GW of onshore and 5GW of offshore wind, GWEC said.
It added that India risks undershooting its 2022 wind energy target if urgent issues are not addressed.
The impacts of Covid-19 combined with market challenges in India will likely bring down onshore wind installations by 6.1GW in the next five years compared to pre-Covid forecasts, GWEC said.
It said the country has huge potential for offshore wind, but development of the industry has so far been slow.
Sumant Sinha, chairman and managing director of ReNew Power, has been designated as the chair of GWEC India, which will be supported by a local office and GWEC team.
The association will leverage the expertise of GWEC’s global network to draw from international best practices, publish market analysis and support policymakers in shaping a sustainable wind sector.
Key challenges addressed by GWEC India will include grid and land availability, off-taker risks, onerous tender conditions, low tariff caps and offshore wind development, the organisation said.
GWEC chief executive Ben Backwell said: “With over 300GW of onshore wind potential and a further 195 GW of offshore wind potential, we have only begun to scratch the surface of India’s wind power capability.
“GWEC has a proven track record working with stakeholders to address regulatory barriers and unlock growth potential in emerging markets across the world, and we are looking forward to doing the same with GWEC India.
“As the government looks to establish the country as a renewable energy manufacturing hub, it will be essential that we have long-term market visibility in order to bring in investors and encourage development of a local industry.
“This is more important than ever as the industry can be a critical driver of jobs and investment, while delivering low-cost power to energy-intensive industries, to power an economic recovery from Covid-19.”
Sinha said: “Wind energy kickstarted the renewable energy revolution in India, and today, with over 38GW of installed capacity, India is the fourth largest wind power market in the world.
“The sector has also been a torch bearer of ‘Aatmanirbharta’, as most of the equipment for the wind energy sector is manufactured domestically.
“Wind power has helped India mitigate around 50.87 million tonnes of CO2 in the past two years and will be a big contributor to India meeting its decarbonisation goals under the Paris Agreement.
“The time is now ripe to accelerate growth and create a framework for government-industry partnership to tackle the challenges being faced by the sector.
“GWEC India will be an indispensable platform for policymakers and the industry to come together and turn these ambitions into reality, and I am thrilled to be part of this important initiative.”