For renewable energy companies in India, it's a good time to be in business. One of India’s largest renewable energy firms, Renew Power, will be among the corporations big and small hoping for a piece of a $2.6 billion government scheme that encourages the domestic manufacturing of components required to produce solar energy. It's the biggest such incentive in India's history. Renew Power's CEO Sumant Sinha said the government funds for clean energy send “a strong signal” that the country wants “to become a manufacturing location for renewable energy equipment and a global alternative to China eventually.” “We are excited to be a part of this journey,” he said. The company has over 100 clean energy projects across India and has become the world’s tenth largest solar and wind energy company in just over a decade. Other major governments around the world have been green lighting ambitious renewable energy policies this past year that aim for major expansions of wind and solar energies, along with development of technologies like carbon capture, which captures carbon dioxide, a central cause of climate change, and stores it in the ground. Some of the policies also include tax credits to buy electric vehicles, heat pumps or energy efficient materials for construction. Read more: Every dollar invested in climate adaptation brings a much higher return on investment: GCA CEO The United States signed into law the Inflation Reduction Act, the most ambitious climate legislation in U.S. history, the European parliament passed the REPower EU plan to reduce dependence on Russian fossil fuels and fast forward the transition to clean energy and China announced ambitious schemes to enable the country to meet its 2030 clean energy goals five years ahead of schedule. Experts say the task is now to build on this momentum in 2023, strengthen energy grid infrastructure and resolve backend issues which slow down the distribution and transmission of clean energy. “From an energy perspective, 2022 will go down as a pivot year. For the first time, we have discernible proof that fossil fuel demand after 200 years of growth had reached a peak in 2019 and we are now bumping along a plateau before an inevitable decline,” said Kingsmill Bond, an energy strategist at the Rocky Mountain Institute, a clean energy non-profit group. RMI’s research has found that global energy demand grew by around six additional exajoules in 2022 — enough energy for around 6 million transatlantic flights. This is less than usual year-on-year growth as energy use is getting more efficient, the report said. Solar and wind supply growth this year was also calculated to be about six exajoules. Bond added that the price of clean energy was getting closer to that of fossil fuels and in some cases it was cheaper. A report by the International Energy Agency said that oil prices rose well above $100 per barrel in mid-2022 and high gas and coal prices accounted for electricity cost hikes around the world. But increased use of clean energy saved Asian countries, including China and India, a total of $34 billion in the past year, a separate report found. Read more: New abnormal: Climate disaster damage ‘down’ to $268 billion Energy analysts say that the global energy crisis triggered by the Russian invasion of Ukraine and increasing climate threats such as the disastrous floods in Pakistan have accelerated the clean energy policies and big tickets investments that are needed to transition to renewable energy, especially wind and solar energy, around the world. The sudden lack of access to fossil fuels and supply chain crunches were also other key reasons for the aggressive tilt towards cleaner energy. For example, Russia’s sale of gas to Europe was reduced to a trickle. The invasion “had the effect of making it apparent that clean energy is the solution," said Lauri Myllyvirta, a lead analyst at the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air. Despite the positive momentum towards clean energy, there were some pitfalls too. “Knee jerk reactions saw some places shift back to fossil fuels even if its at a higher price to the taxpayer,” said Vibhuti Garg, a New Delhi-based energy economist at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis. India's coal production increased by about 17% from April to November 2022. Bangladesh increased its imports of natural gas and went ahead with opening thermal powerplants in the country. Germany, a strong advocate of clean energy, turned to coal and oil to address its short term power needs. “It was a good year for renewable energy but sadly, not a bad year for fossil fuels either,” Garg added. Read more: In new role as G-20 chair, India set to focus on climate But spurred by momentum from previous years the clean energy sector worldwide nevertheless took off this year. “You know, 20 years ago, renewables became the cleanest forms of energy and then in the last few years, renewables become the cheapest form of energy," said Dave Jones, an energy analyst at London-based environmental think-tank, Ember. “Only this year, they’ve become the most secure form of energy." Another report by the IEA said that developments in 2022 triggered unprecedented momentum behind renewables, with the world set to add as much renewable power in the next five years as it did in the past 20. “There is still a lot that needs to be done but I think 2022 will be remembered as the year in which for the first time, renewables have ticked all the boxes,” Jones said. There's acknowledgement from those in the sector that more work needs to be done to overcome the scale of the transition. Sinha of Renew Power hopes that government policies in 2023 focus on dealing with the bottlenecks that prevent clean energy growth. “Currently the power sector is designed around fossil fuels and suddenly you have all this clean energy coming into the grid," said Sinha. "We need more proactive policies that find ways to make room for renewables.”
Bangladesh and the World Bank on Wednesday signed a $515 million financing agreement to help nine million people get access to reliable power supply while transitioning to clean energy. The agreement was signed by Economic Relations Division secretary Fatima Yasmin and Acting World Bank Country Director for Bangladesh and Bhutan, Dandan Chen, on behalf of the Bangladesh government and the World Bank, respectively. Read: WB okays $1.03 billion to help improve regional trade in Bangladesh, Nepal The agreement includes a $15 million grant from the Clean Technology Fund to support Battery Energy Storage Systems (BESS). The credit is from the World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), and has a 35-year term, including a five-year grace period. The Electricity Distribution Modernization Program will support the digitisation and modernisation of 25 Palli Bidyut Samitis in Dhaka and Mymensingh divisions and reduce system losses by over 2 percent. The Program will increase Bangladesh Rural Electrification Board’s (BREB) delivery of power by 6,790 GW while improving climate resilience of the system, according to a release. 'The Program is aligned with the government’s Integrated Energy and Power Sector Master Plan, currently under preparation, which will help establish a low carbon energy system,” said secretary Fatima. She said that generating clean and reliable power can help rural communities to increase productivity and cope with events brought on by climate change. “The government of Bangladesh has prioritised access to power in the last decade and now the entire population has access to power. The installed generation capacity increased five-fold to 25 GW in the same period,” Chen said. Through this Program, new and emerging technologies will further strengthen the efficiency and reliability of power supply in the country to meet the needs for faster economic growth, he added. The Program will support solar metering connections for over 100 customers, bringing 150 MW of new rooftop solar capacity into the grid. Read: WB approves $120 mln loan to develop climate smart agriculture, water management It will improve and construct 31,000 kms of distribution lines and deploy 200,000 advanced meters, the release said. In addition, the Program will help strengthen BESS and distributed renewable energy through preparation of road maps for deployment. This would lead to an annual reduction of carbon emissions by 41,400 metric tonnes.
Team Europe Initiative on Green Energy Transition (TEI GET) will promote renewable energy in Bangladesh in achieving its national goal. The TEI GET expressed such interest while a delegation of the organisation made a field visit to 3 renewable energy projects in Dhamrai area of Dhaka on Tuesday. According to a release, representatives off Germany and the European Union, as TEI GET Co-Chairs, along with high-level representatives of Denmark, Sweden, AFD, GIZ, KFW, Switzerland were present. Read Akij sets up rooftop solar plant with Huawei's technology Additional Secretary of Renewable Energy, Power Division of Bangladesh Md Mostafa Kamal,, Additional Secretary and Member Admin, Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA) Md Golam Mostofa were also present. The field visit, organized together with IDCOL, started with a guided tour of the operational rooftop solar with Net Metering system at Snowtex Outerwear Ltd. at Dhamrai, Savar, following a discussion meeting with TEI GET, IDCOL, Snowtex Management and Government counterparts. Later, the group visited an IDCOL project, co-financed by KFW, of Solar Irrigation Pumps, and a domestic biogas plant in Dhamrai. Read: 25% electricity from renewables by 2030: SREDA proposes, GOB disposes? During the visit’s discussion, Johannes Schneider, Head of Development Cooperation, Germany, highlighted EU Member States’ common interest to support Bangladesh in achieving their national goals and international commitments in the field of renewable energy through the Team Europe Initiative “This Initiative will allow us to better coordinate and consolidate our engagement in the Green Energy Sector and strengthen our relationship with the Bangladesh Government and the private sector,” he said. Maurizio Cian, Head of Cooperation, EU Delegation, highlighted the transformational approach of Team Europe said that the Team Europe’s common values and expertise in Renewable Energy are key drivers of this initiative. Read Bangladesh seeks IRENA’s support to explore renewable energy potential “Team Europe provides the framework to deliver European support to the Government of Bangladesh, with the ambition of a transformational impact in accelerating a green and just energy transition,” he added. Mostafa Kamal, Additional Secretary of Power Division, said that Bangladesh is committed to increase renewable energy contribution in the national power generation mix, to promote appropriate, efficient and environment friendly technology for the development of renewable energy. “We are looking forward to implementing our strategies in collaboration with Team Europe,” he said. Read: Renewable energy could be Bangladesh’s best option post Covid-19 TEI GET, launched in Dhaka in June 2021, aims at supporting Bangladesh to build a power system that leads to maximum coverage of the country`s energy demand through renewable energy while reducing GHG emissions, energy consumption and demand through energy efficiency. TEI GET, co-chaired by Germany and the EU includes EU Member States Denmark, France, Italy, Spain, Sweden, The Netherlands, the European Investment Bank (EIB) and like-minded countries like Norway and Switzerland. TEI GET comprises projects in the area of effective sustainable energy market, optimized grid infrastructure and renewable energy integration into the grid, it added. Read Govt aims for 10% electricity from renewables by 2025
Bangladesh aims to significantly expand renewable energy sources in its total energy mix in its relentless pursuit of a net-zero carbon footprint. As one of the key steps in this regard, the Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda) has set a target of generating 5,000 MW of onshore and offshore wind power by 2030. Wind energy is power obtained from the force of wind using turbines. The country currently generates only 2.9 MW of wind power. Read Bangladesh going for green energy to mitigate climate change impact: Minister According to Sreda officials, the huge target is being considered as an immediate option for the next few years in compliance with the government’s commitment to promoting renewable energy -- given the fact that an American agency recently pegged the country’s wind power generation potential at 30,000 MW. The US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NERL) conducted a study -- Assessing the Wind Energy Potential in Bangladesh: Enabling Wind Energy Development with Data Products -- from June 2014 to December 2017. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded study concluded with the observation that “preliminary results demonstrate that, for wind speeds of 5.75–7.75 metre per second (m/s), there are more than 20,000 square kilometres of land with a gross wind potential of over 30,000 MW”. READ: Wind energy vision: Contracts for Chandpur, Inani projects likely soon About the wind power potentials, Sreda chairman Mohammad Alauddin said the organisation will now conduct a detailed study on the basis of the NREL’s findings to get the bankable data "so that potential investors can invest in the sector and make their investment commercially viable". "A proposal on wind power's potential will be placed before the Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Ministry to incorporate the target in the proposed Integrated Energy and Power Master Plan (IEPMP) up to 2030, now being framed with the help of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)," he told UNB. The NREL study said, “Although this estimate is not realistic, when proper filters are applied to screen out undesirable land for wind development, it suggests that Bangladesh's 10% renewable target by 2021 is achievable”. Read Policy support instrumental for renewable energy development: Experts “The preliminary technical potential analysis calculates gross potential and does not filter out already-developed land, environmentally sensitive land, or land unsuitable for other reasons," it added. The NERL study found the wind potentials at nine locations across the country, having an average wind speed of 5-6 metre per second at a height of over 60-80 metre above ground level (AGL) -- Lalpur of Natore in Rajshahi, Chandpur, Sitakunda and Parkay Beach in Chattogram, Gouripur in Mymensingh, Madhupur Tea Estate in Habigonj, Dacop in Khulna near Mongla port, Inani Beach in Cox's Bazar, and Badarganj in Rangpur. Of these, initiatives have already been taken to set up wind power plants at three places -- at Dacop, Inani Beach and Chandpur, each having 50 MW capacity. A contract has already been awarded for the Dacop location. Read India At COP26 Says Its Solar Energy Capacity Increased 17 Times In 7 Years "Exploiting the new and efficient technology, we're now planning to set up a good number of wind power plants by 2030," Alauddin said, referring to the NREL study that found the wind speed at six metres per second at a higher hub height. Energy experts, however, are skeptical about the country's wind power's potential and it's commercial viability. Eminent energy expert Dr M Tamim said that the proposal for generating 5,000 MW of power from wind is "not only highly ambitious, but highly subjective as well". READ: Bangladesh’s future focus may be on nuclear energy use: Dr Tawfiq "Which technology will be used, where it will be used and what will be the cost of electricity and who will be the investors in such projects... these are big questions," said the Professor of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Engineering at BUET. Sreda statistics show that the country currently generates a total 777.24 MW of electricity from different renewable sources. Of this, 543.25 MW is generated from solar energy, 2.9 MW from wind, 230 MW from hydro, 0.69 MW from biogas, and 0.4 MW from biomass, while the country’s total power generation capacity is about 25,000 MW. Read _Bangladesh’s two dream projects face speed bumps Shariar Ahmed Chowdhury, a professor at United International University, said that wind energy is very sensitive. "If data lacks 10% accuracy, it has a big impact and there may be a variation of 30-40% in the final output," he said.
Steps will be taken to import clean energy from the neighbouring nations alongside the ongoing efforts to increase the share of renewable energy in the energy mix, said State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid. He revealed the plan while addressing a presentation session of the Power Grid Company of Bangladesh (PGCB) on the country’s power transmission plan at a city hotel on Saturday. Nasrul said new sources of renewable energies are coming up to boost the energy mix against the backdrop of global climate change. Held with power secretary Habibur Rahman in the chair, the function was also addressed by Planning Commission member Sharifa Khan. Additional secretary of the power division Nurul Alam conducted the event. Read: USAID launches new clean energy project in Bangladesh Director of Power Grid Company India Limited Abhay Chowdhury made a presentation on the topic.
Bangladesh and the United States on Monday launched a new clean energy project that will help Dhaka improve access to affordable and sustainable energy. The $17-million five-year flagship clean energy project is named “Bangladesh Advancing Development Growth through Energy (BADGE). It will help improve access to affordable, reliable, and sustainable energy systems and promote transparent and efficient energy markets. US Agency for International Development (USAID) Mission Director Derrick S. Brown and Chairman, Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA), Government of Bangladesh Mohammad Alauddin announced the launch of the new clean energy project. The event, “US-Bangladesh Climate Mitigation and Energy Cooperation - Launch of USAID BADGE programme,” elaborated the details of the project to key energy stakeholders. US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry highlighted the project during his visit to Dhaka with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in April 2021. Speaking at the event, Derrick Brown said they see tremendous opportunity in powering countries like Bangladesh with clean energy. “Through the BADGE activity, we aim to improve access to affordable, reliable, and sustainable energy systems and promote transparent and efficient energy markets,” he said. BADGE will expand Bangladesh’s access to affordable clean energy, support clean energy entrepreneurship, foster transparent and efficient energy markets, and advance innovation. The activity aims to create an enabling environment for development of advanced energy technologies, high performing energy institutions, increased regional energy trade, and transparent and best-valued energy procurement in Bangladesh. BADGE is one of USAID’s main activities to accelerate clean energy and net zero strategies in Bangladesh and achieve Asia EDGE’s goals across the Indo-Pacific region. It is also a part of USAID’s recently launched “Energizing a Net-Zero Asia” initiative that comprises seven new next-generation clean energy programs, totalling more than $200 million, to establish foundations for a net-zero energy grid in Asia. Representatives from the Bangladesh Government, academicians, researchers, the private sector, and donors participated in the launch event. The US government, through USAID, has provided more than $8 billion in development assistance to Bangladesh since its independence, said the US Embassy in Dhaka. In 2020, USAID alone provided over $200 million to improve the lives of people in Bangladesh through programs that expand food security and economic opportunity, improve health and education, promote democratic institutions and practices, protect the environment, and increase resilience to climate change.
Bangladesh and Netherlands on Thursday discussed ways to have broader collaboration as demand for safe and quality agro commodities, clean energy and resilient infrastructure will rise in the coming decades.
President-elect Joe Biden will inherit a vulnerable economic recovery under threat from a resurgent virus, likely with a divided Congress that will hinder his ability to address the challenges.
The UK government has announced a £50 million investment in a new Clean Energy Innovation Facility (CEIF) under its International Climate Finance.