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Centre studying feasibility of introducing ‘green certificates’

Staff Reporter

To increase renewable energy share from 2.5 per cent to 15 per cent by 2020

— Photo : Bijoy Ghosh

CLEAN ENERGY: (From left) Ramesh Kymal, Chairman, Renewable Energy Council, CII-Godrej Green Business Centre; Pramod Deo, Chairperson and Chief Executive, Central Electricity Regulatory Commission; Carmine D’ Aloisio, Minister-Counsellor for Commercial Affairs, U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service; and Christodas Gandhi, CMD, Tamil Nadu Energy Development Agency, at a conference in Chennai on Thursday.

CHENNAI: To promote renewable energy, the Centre is studying the feasibility of introducing renewable energy certificates or ‘green certificates’, a system similar to carbon credits, according to Pramod Deo, chairperson and chief executive, Central Electricity Regulatory Commission.

The government is aiming to increase the share of renewable energy from the current 2.5 per cent to 15 per cent by 2020, he said. State Electricity Boards, which fell short of the renewable energy targets set by the government, could acquire these certificates.

Mr. Deo was addressing the inaugural session of the Green Power 2009, an international conference and exposition on renewable energy organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry here on Thursday.

0The theme was ‘Mainstreaming renewable energy into India’s electricity sector for achieving energy security.’

Explaining how the green certificates will work, Mr. Deo said a registry under the National Load Dispatch Centre would issue them to power generation companies. The certificates could be traded through power exchanges. The market would determine the price. One certificate would equal 1 Mega Watt of renewable energy generated. The validity of the certificates would be one financial year. The aim was to have the system in place by April 2010.

Speakers dwelt on issues facing different sectors of renewable energy and various policy measures the sectors needed.

To boost the solar energy market, the comfort level of bankers in India had to be increased, said Carmine D’ Aloisio, Minister-Counsellor for Commercial Affairs, U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service. Bankers were comfortable with the wind energy sector but not solar energy.

Outlining the current state of renewable energy generation in Tamil Nadu, R. Christodas Gandhi, chairman and managing director, Tamil Nadu Energy Development Agency, said that the total installed capacity of power generation from renewable energy sources was 4813 MW as of April 30, 2009. Wind power contributed the most, accounting for 4311 MW.

The generation of electricity from renewable sources was 7532 million units during 2007-08, which was 11 per cent of the grid consumption.

Discussing emerging opportunities in various renewable energy sectors, Ramesh Kymal, chairman, Renewable Energy Council, CII – Godrej Green Business Centre, said that 13 States in India had a potential of 45,000 MW of wind power.

Potential for hydro power in India was estimated at 15,000 MW and biomass power, 19,500 MW.

Some of the measures required from the regulatory commissions to achieve this potential included implementation of renewable portfolio standards by all utilities across the country, mandating purchase tariffs for all renewable energy sources and long-term financing of renewable energy projects at lower interest rates.

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