Daily News Wrap-Up: Thermal Plants Must Install 40% Renewable Power Capacity

FDI in renewables dips 46% in Q3 2023

March 7, 2023


The Ministry of Power has announced that any coal or lignite-based thermal generation station coming up on or after April 1, 2023, must either install or procure renewable energy equivalent to 40% of the thermal generation capacity. Also, any coal or lignite-based thermal generating station with the project’s commercial operation date between April 1, 2023, and March 31, 2025, would be required to comply with the renewable generation obligation of 40% by April 1, 2025.

Foreign Direct investment (FDI) in India’s renewable energy sector stood at $251 million (~₹20.5 billion) in the third quarter (Q3) of the financial year (FY) 2023, a 46% decline compared to $461.5 million (~₹37.7 billion) in Q2 FY 2023. The decrease in investments can be attributed to the geopolitical situation resulting from the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and high inflation leading to more restrictive monetary policies in the FDI-source countries.

Power transmission company Sterlite Power has successfully commissioned its Lakadia-Vadodara Transmission Project (LVTPL), which is part of its green energy corridor initiative. The project is designed to transport over 5 GW of power from Bhuj and Kutch to the national grid. LVTPL has been constructed as an inter-state transmission system at a cost of ₹20.2 billion (~$247 million). This system connects a 765/400 kV substation at Lakadia to Vadodara through a 335-km long, double-circuit transmission line at 765 kV. The project consists of 812 towers that span seven districts in Gujarat.

Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners, on behalf of its New Markets Fund I (CI NMF I), has entered into a partnership with Viviid Renewables to develop more than 1.8 GW of greenfield renewable energy projects in India. Initially, the partnership will concentrate on two onshore wind projects with a combined capacity of over 500 MW. These projects will be developed with the help of the CI NMF funds, and the partnership plans to construct them soon.

The Indian Energy Exchange traded 341 million units (MU) of renewable energy in February 2023, a 2% decrease month-over-month (MoM) compared to 347 MU traded in the previous month and a 25% year-over-year (YoY) decrease. The average daily trading volume on the exchange increased by 5% MoM. However, the overall trading volume decreased by 5% MoM due to fewer trading days in February.

Jindal Stainless has announced it is planning to install two rooftop solar power projects of 21 MW capacity and 6 MW capacity at its Jajpur and Hisar units, respectively, in a move to reduce its carbon footprint. The roofs of various shop floors at both units have been identified to install these rooftop solar projects with an investment of more than ₹1.2 billion (~$14.6 million). Both projects are scheduled to be completed by March 2024. The two rooftop solar projects are expected to generate about 795 million units of electricity, with a carbon abatement potential of 564,450 tons in its life span of 25 years.

Olectra Greentech, a subsidiary of Megha Engineering & Infrastructures Limited, has received an order for 550 electric buses from the Telangana State Road Transport Corporation. The company said the order is vital to Telangana’s electric mobility initiative for large-scale clean, green public transportation. K.V. Pradeep, Chairman and MD of Olectra Greentech said the company won the order to supply 50 standard floor 12-meter intercity coach e-buses and 500 low floor 12-meter intracity e-buses from the TSRTC. The e-buses will be delivered in phases soon.

Atlantica Sustainable Infrastructure, a UK-headquartered sustainable infrastructure company, posted a revenue of $244 million in the fourth quarter of the financial year 2022, a year-over-year  decrease of 10% from $271.3 million. The company owns a diversified portfolio of contracted renewable energy, storage, natural gas, power transmission, and water assets in North and South America and other regions. The company’s renewable energy portfolio grew to 2,121 MW in 2022 from 2,044 MW in 2021.

Speeding up the implementation of renewable energy power generation, cutting down the cost of electricity generation, promoting fuel diversification, and investing in energy storage will be the key focus areas for 2023, according to RatedPower‘s annual report. The report draws insights from the inputs of experts from various industries and simulations run by RatedPower’s solar project simulation software.

Researchers at Lehigh University, with support from the United States Department of Energy, have developed a new thermal energy system – Lehigh Thermal Battery – which consists of engineered cementitious materials and thermosiphons in a combination that enables fast and efficient thermal performance at a low cost. The technology is capable of operating with heat or electricity as the charging energy input.