Astonfield, Areva to invest in biomass power projects

Business Standard 2009-07-25, New Delhi

Astonfield Renewable Resources Ltd. (ARRL), the US-based renewable energy company and Areva Renewable, the green energy arm of the French energy major Areva, have entered into an agreement to set up 100 Mw of biomass-based power generation capacity in India.

The two companies would invest Rs. 550-630 crore for setting up 10 power projects of around 10 Mw capacity each at various locations in the country.

"Areva would invest 40 per cent of the project cost and the rest 60 per cent investment would be made by Astonfield. The projects have been targeted for commissioning by 2013." Ameet Shah, co-chairman and director, Astonfield Renewable Resources, said.

Work on the first power plant of 10 Mw capacity under the agreement would begin by the end of the current year at Gangarampur in West Bengal.

ARRL, is a member of the Astonfield Group of Companies and has chalked out plants to invest over Rs. 9,000 crore in renewable energy projects in two-three years in India.

Currently, India has an installed biomass power generation capacity of over 1,600 Mw. Around 150 million metric tones of surplus biomass is available in the country with a potential power generation capacity of 16,000 Mw according to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy.