Wind energy; forest land aquisition; carbon credit;

Last Wednesday I was on some remote mountain , near sangli, ~150 kilometers south of Pune city, on National Highway 4. These mountain ranges where all covered by wind mills, belonging to several companies, mostly suzlon, vesta and enercon.

These companies install/develop wind mills for anyone who wants to buy it, or rather invest money. Cost of simplest wind mill starts ~4 crores [1 million]. These companies keep many windmill for them self.

I was out with one senior engineer working with enercon and kept asking him many questions about economics of wind energy and related activities. He has been working for wind energy companies for last 10 years.

He has supervised actual installations of wind mills and has done liasioning [formal paperwork] of certifying carbon credits for wind energy produced. At this point of time he takes care of land acquisition for his company.

He looks for two different types of lands, one which can be actually used for installing newer wind mills and other land is for forestation. He explained me that for every piece of land which gets used for wind mills, company has to submit replacement land and handover to forest department.[I am not sure if thats the only intention, there are chances that these companies claim carbon credits for all forest land they buy] Cost of acre land in forest region was around 25000 Indian rupees[~500 bucks].

Later I told him how American entrepreneurs are taking benefits of carbon credits. I know of one Professor from berkley university who has come up with genetically modified rice seeds, he has a deal with farmers in Indonesia, who use these seeds for cultivation. These crops emit less carbon than the usual ones, he collects carbon credits for it. Another story where a Texas based company throws a kind of green algae in middle of sea, these living plants absorb carbon from atmosphere and this company claims carbon credits.

posted by Nitin @ 8:14 PM,


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