Praveer Sinha, CEO and managing director of Tata Power, has unveiled an ambitious plan to transform the energy company’s generation portfolio towards ‘clean and green’ sources and attain carbon neutrality before 2050.
Tata Power’s generation mix is dominated by coal-based thermal power capacity even as it makes impressive gains in expanding its renewables assets.
As of March 31, Tata had a total power generation capacity of 12,808 MW, with thermal accounting for 69% (8,859 MW) and the near-4 GW balance accounted for by 1,762 MW of solar, 932 MW of wind, 880 MW of hydro and 375 MW of blast-furnace gas waste-heat recovery.
To switch to clean energy, the company will not develop new coal-based capacity or acquire coal-based stressed assets. The existing thermal fleet will be retired upon the end of plant life or the expiry of power purchase agreements, Tata has announced.
As a staging post to net zero, the company intends to have 80% of its generation assets ‘clean and green’ this decade, up from 31% at the end of March, with Tata considering its gas-related waste heat capacity under that definition.
The Mumbai-based electric utility – part of the global manufacturing conglomerate Tata Group – said it will add 2 GW of solar and hybrid-technology capacity annually to hit 25 GW this decade, up from 4 GW three months ago. Microgrids will form an important part of the strategy, with Tata having commissioned 161 of them to date, with more 4.8 MW of total generation capacity.
The electric company also intends to bring in a portfolio of renewables technologies, including hybrid clean energy plants, offshore wind, floating solar, and hydrogen fuel and has said it will strengthen its battery storage partnerships.
Tata’s current renewables activity encompasses utility and rooftop solar engineering, procurement and construction (EPC); floating solar; microgrids; and hybrid systems; as well as solar products such as pumps, modules and cells, and reverse-osmosis water purification devices.
The power company’s Tata Power Solar Systems unit is India’s largest utility scale solar EPC and had a presence in 11 states and an order book of more than 2.8 GW worth around INR8,700 crore at the end of March.
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