In the southern Tamil Nadu state, some 225 members of the The Tamil Nadu Spinning Mills Association (TASMA) invested in their first ‘bundled wind power project’ in 2005, co-ordinated by Tasma and called Tasma I, says Bharathi Kannan Venkatachalam, the head of clean development mechanism (CDM) and voluntary carbon standard (VCS) projects at Tasma.
With a capacity to generate 469MW of power from 704 wind turbines, Tasma I returned INR200 crore to investors from carbon credits sold to a foreign buyer, Venkatachalam adds.
Tamil Nadu’s industries have suffered unreliable power supply for several years. The electricity demand-supply gap in the state was 1,300MW by late 2007, according to a Financial Express report, and has widened ever since – explaining why some industrialists decided to take matters into their own hands.
Collectively, the members of the association now own wind turbines capable of generating 3,000MW of wind power or half the installed capacity of the state, a first in India. Around 70 percent of all the wind power generated by Tasma’s bundled wind projects are used by member industries for their captive consumption, Venkatachalam says, and the remainder is sold to the grid.
India recorded the highest growth in renewable energy investments in 2011, as per a Bloomberg survey, with wind energy and solar energy projects growing the fastest.
Certified Emission Reduction or CERs are akin to stock certificates that declare projects in developing countries as having reduced green house gas emissions. Companies in developed countries buy CERs under the clean development mechanism process to help them achieve targets stipulated under the Kyoto Protocol, explained Venkatachalam.