Renewable energy company CleanMax has signed a deal with social media giant Facebook for co-running a portfolio of wind and solar projects across India that will supply clean energy into the electrical grid.
Under the agreement, both the companies will assemble a portfolio of wind and solar projects where Mumbai-based CleanMax will own and operate these facilities, and Facebook will commit to long-term support of the projects by buying power off the grid using environmental attribute certificates.
Among other projects is the 32 MW wind project located in Karnataka where the two companies will be working together. Last year, CleanMax entered into a similar agreement with USA-based Cargill to set up a 15 MW wind-solar power plant in Karnataka
Cleantech Ecosystem Takes Root
Most major tech companies around the world including Google, Apple, Amazon and Facebook have moved their operations and data centres around the world to renewable energy platforms. This is part of their commitment to reducing the environmental toll from their expansion. Walmart-owned Flipkart has announced the launch of a new ‘green’ data centre in Telangana’s capital Hyderabad in association with CtrlS in April 2019.
A number of cleantech companies have emerged in the past few years and they are working with mega corporations as well as government agencies to reduce the reliance on fossil fuel or other non-clean energy sources. As per the India Brand Equity Foundation, India was ranked fifth in wind power, fifth in solar power and fourth in renewable power installed capacity, as of 2019. The government has already set a target to achieve 175 GW of installed renewable energy capacity by the end of 2022, under its National Solar Mission. The IBEF says installed renewable power generation capacity has seen annual growth of 17.33% between FY16 and FY20.
India’s largest renewable energy producer in terms of generation capacity, ReNew Power can generate up to 8 GW of power and has assets across 16 states in India. The Goldman Sachs-backed ReNew Power recently raised $585 Mn through a dollar bond offering. The company has an enterprise value of around $8 Bn.
Investors are bullish on the sector too. Masayoshi Son-led SoftBank is looking to raise $500 Mn – $750 Mn for SBG Cleantech, which is a joint venture (JV) between SoftBank, India’s Bharti Enterprises and Taiwan’s Foxconn. The JV plans to use this capital to fund ongoing and pipeline projects in India and the US.
Besides renewable energy, startups in India, such as Log9 Materials, Zunroof, Oorjan, ION Energy, Gegadyne and others are also looking to introduce new portable power solutions to power the next-generation of electric vehicles with clean energy.