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GWEC report addresses challenges of developing offshore wind in India

Thu 30 Jun 2016 by David Foxwell

GWEC report addresses challenges of developing offshore wind in India
GWEC’s study looks at key issues that could affect implementation of offshore wind in India, such as logistics and port facilities

The Global Wind Energy Council (GWEC) has published a new report, Supply Chain, Port Infrastructure and Logistics Study, for offshore wind development in the Indian states of Gujarat and Tamil Nadu. It says the study is “a significant step forward” in preparing a roadmap for offshore wind power in India by the GWEC-led facilitating offshore wind in India (FOWIND) consortium. The study forms the basis for future offshore wind feasibility assessments, and gives a better understanding for companies and government institutions as to what is required for developing a successful offshore wind industry. The FOWIND consortium aims to complete the roadmap for offshore wind development in India by 2018. 

In the report, the key supply chain elements of the offshore wind sector are assessed along with a preliminary evaluation of companies entering the offshore wind sector. As part of the supply chain assessment, port infrastructure and logistics are reviewed, identifying key component specifications, vessel requirements and installation strategies. The study provides the first overview of existing port infrastructure in Gujarat and Tamil Nadu and the possible improvements required for manufacturing, installation and OEM of offshore windfarms.

India has the world’s fifth largest onshore wind market with a total installed capacity of nearly 27 gigawatts (GW). However, the country has an acute need for large-scale, clean and indigenous energy generation to fuel its rapidly growing economy. Offshore wind power could play an important role due to the large wind resources available near centres of high-energy demand. As GWEC notes, globally, offshore wind power is becoming mainstream with installations exceeding 12GW at the end of 2015.

“Developing offshore wind in India presents both unique challenges and opportunities. This report is one step forward on the long road towards building a robust, sustainable and cost-effective offshore wind industry in India,” said GWEC’s secretary general Steve Sawyer.

“We believe the FOWIND project – including this report – is a great learning experience for all involved,” said Mathias Steck, executive vice president and regional manager Asia Pacific at DNV GL – Energy. “Apart from gathering a lot of valuable knowledge, it also helps to identify where barriers need to be removed and communication needs to be improved, so that the industry can concentrate on its main purpose.”