GE Invests $50 Million In India Wind Company Greenko

General Electric’s Energy Financial Services arm is making its first renewable energy investment in India.

GE invested in Greenko (LON:GKO), which currently owns and operates 183 MW of clean energy plants, including seven hydro, six biomass, and one gas/liquid fuel plant.

GE’s $50 million investment will give the company the money it needs to develop 500 megawatts (MW) of wind projects across India. 

"That 500 MW rollout will be enough to fund the rest of the 1 GW (target) thereafter," Greenko’s President Mahesh Kolli says in an interview with Reuters. "We will raise further capital as required, but are well funded for the next phase of growth."

Greenko plans to develop 1 gigawatt of wind in India by 2016-2017.

The 1.6 MW wind turbines for the first project – a 65 MW Ratnagiri wind farm in Maharashtra – will be assembled at GE’s facility in India, and is scheduled to be completed by December. The turbines are specifically designed for low and medium wind speeds.

Wind is growing by 30% a year on average and is the fastest growing renewable energy source in India. The potential in India is about 45 GW, with only about 14 GW installed, Kolli told Reuters. "Wind energy is now more a mainstream energy play. These assets have come up to grid parity level in India."

As of 2010, GE is the world’s third-largest wind turbine manufacturer, behind Vestas (Denmark) and Sinovel Wind (China). GE Energy Financial Services has a $6 billion portfolio of renewable energy investments worldwide.

India’s goal is to add 17 GW of renewable energy between  2012-2017. That sounds like a lot but it’s small compared to the 100 GW the country plans to add in total energy capacity. India follows the US and China as the world’s biggest greenhouse gas polluter.

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