State-run NTPC Ltd, the country's biggest power generation utility, plans to add 1,000 MW of renewable energy capacity, including 650 MW from wind energy, over the next few years as part of its diversification drive.
"In the Corporate Plan of NTPC Ltd, it is envisaged to add a capacity of 1,000 MW through renewable energy sources," Power Minister Sushilkumar Shinde told Rajya Sabha in a written reply on Wednesday.
Of this, 650 MW is to be added through wind energy by 2017, he said, adding NTPC has already signed an MoU with Asian Development Bank for setting up a joint venture company to undertake such projects. "The JV company will be formed among NTPC, ADB and other strategic investors. Some of the strategic investors could be from private sector," he said.
Shinde said NTPC was in the process of assessing various potential locations for wind farms in association with Centre for Wind Energy Technology (C-WET), a research and development institution under Ministry of New and Renewable Energy.
He said NTPC has expertise for capacity addition in wind energy and other renewable sectors, but to put 50 MW of wind farm on fast-track, NTPC has approached C-WET as consultant.
NTPC's foray into wind power comes after similar strategies adopted by other energy companies such as ONGC, HPCL, Tata Power, Reliance Energy and BP. India is the world's fourth largest wind energy producer with an installed capacity of more than 7,000 MW, only behind Germany, Spain and the US.
The navratna PSU, which has an installed capacity of more than 27,000 MW entirely on coal or gas, has been looking to diversify into other energy sources and is already working on hydroelectric projects, besides a few small biomass plants.