Japanese trading conglomerate Mitsui has agreed to buy a 49% stake in a pan-Indian project that would combine wind and solar generation with battery storage to provide 400MW of firm generation to state-owned Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI).
Mitsui added that it is difficult for conventional renewable energy projects to commit to stable electricity supply, but the ‘round-the-clock’ supply of 400MW of power can be assured using the portfolio of wind, solar and battery storage.
It is unclear when Mitsui’s deal to buy the 49% stake is due to close. Indian renewables developer ReNew is due to retain 51% of the project through its subsidiary ReNew Surya Roshni Private Limited.
The $1.35 billion project, initiated by ReNew Power, is already in development and is due to be in commercial operation in August 2023.
It will involve three 300MW wind farms: one in Maharashtra state and two further south in Karnataka. The northern state of Rajasthan will have a 400MW solar array co-located with a 100MWh battery.
India is the third-largest emitter of greenhouse gases worldwide, and recently announced plans to raise its non-fossil energy capacity to 500GW by 2030, to meet 50% of its energy demand through renewables. The firm power contract could be a model for reducing India’s current reliance on coal-fired generation, Mitsui added.
Mitsui, which is participating via its wholly owned subsidiary MIT Power India, stated that it will contribute to the project “by using its accumulated knowledge of the electric power business in Japan and other countries to ensure steady progress toward completion and the smooth start-up of commercial operations”.