New Delhi, October 10, 2011 — Expanding GE’s footprint in India and connection with one of the country’s fastest growing clean energy developers, GE Energy Financial Services and Indian-based Greenko Group, have agreed to invest in a new venture to develop wind energy projects across India.
The GE unit will invest $50 million to support the development of 500 MW of wind power projects out of Greenko’s planned development of one gigawatt of wind projects in India. Greenko has committed $65 million for the venture, a newly created unit of Greenko, known as Greenko Wind Project Private.
Greenko is currently developing a pipeline of wind projects in the Indian states of Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Rajasthan, which the new venture, an Indian holding company and Greenko unit specifically set up to develop wind projects, will own.
The first project, the 65-MW Ratnagiri wind farm in Maharashtra, is planned for completion in December and will use GE’s 1.6-MW wind turbines. The wind turbines, specifically designed for low and medium wind speeds, will be assembled at GE’s facility in Pune, India.
Once operational, a 500-MW wind portfolio could generate enough renewable electricity to power 875,000 average Indian households and displace 700,000 tons per year of greenhouse gas emissions, the equivalent of taking 137,000 average U.S. cars off the road.
Greenko estimates that with an average growth rate of 30 percent, wind energy is the fastest growing clean energy source in India. The company estimates that less than 25 percent of the country’s wind energy potential — estimated at 45,000 MW — has been harnessed to date. The Indian government has set a renewable energy target of 15 percent by 2020 and provided what Greenko believes is a strong and clear policy framework to support the continued expansion of renewable energy sources.