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Five Bangalore companies join hands for solar project

According to reports, in an effort to reduce their excessive dependence on grid power, five companies in Bangalore – Infosys, Cognizant, Coke, Philips and Bangalore International Exhibition Center – have come together to set up an aggregate solar power project.

The project, implemented by World Resources Institute under its Green Power Market Development Group, was launched in January 2013 and received four bids from suppliers . With two finalists now, the project has reached negotiations with individual companies, sources said.

This collaborative solar project took shape after the companies were looking to invest in renewable power but were hesitant to deal with the many variables including power purchase agreements. The project entails the companies to mount roof top solar panels and draw solar power from these for their daily consumption .

“It is not an enormous project, but one which will be demonstrative in nature,” David Waskow, director of the international climate initiative at the World Resources Institute, said.

Waskow said that such actions by companies will enthuse others to follow. “Solar prices are falling sharply every year. With rising prices of conventional power, we believe we are very close to the inflexion point for mass adoption of solar power,” Waskow said.

The price parity between grid power and solar will be achieved by 2017-18, global consultants KPMG has predicted . “KPMG has said that at around 6 per KWH, the inflexion point will be reached,” Waskow said.

Government subsidies and low prices are the two critical parameters which would push people to adopt renewable power, especially solar power. “We should work towards the creation of financial infrastructure to make renewable energy feasible and also make storage options cost effective,” he said.

Focusing on micro-grids and mini-grids and incentivizing energy efficiency practices could advance the renewable energy push. “We have already developed standards for home appliances on energy efficiency. Steps like these are important,” Waskow said.

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