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India’s leading Cement manufacturer, Bharathi Cement has commissioned a 10 MW ground-mounted solar power plant at its manufacturing facility at Kadapa in Andhra Pradesh, as part of its long-term plan to transition to renewable energy. This plant will generate close to 16 million units of electricity annually and help reduce Bharathi’s overall energy costs by reducing its reliance on thermal power.
The project was executed by Hyderabad-based Fourth Partner Energy in record 60 days.
This 10 MW Solar plant for captive electricity consumption is spread across 41 acres in Bharathi Cement’s 5 MTPA manufacturing unit in Kadapa. French Construction conglomerate the Vicat Group owns 51 per cent stake in Bharathi Cement and operates this facility. Inaugurating the 10 MW plant, Guy Sidos, Chairman of the NYSE-listed Vicat Group said, “This investment into the solar plant here reiterates our global commitment towards renewable energy and sustainable development. We are present in 12 countries and have already initiated the switch to solar power across India and Senegal. This is one more contribution towards our sustainability story.”
Anoop Kumar Saxena, CEO, Vicat India & Bharathi Cement added, “With this solar plant, we have reduced our dependency on thermal power and have entirely fulfilled our internal Renewable Purchase Obligations (RPO)s. This is in-line with the objective of the International Solar Alliance (ISA), initiated by India and France in 2015.”
India is the second largest producer of cement in the world, manufacturing over 500 MT in 2018.
Vivek Subramanian, Co-Founder & Executive Director at Fourth Partner Energy said, “Cement manufacturing is an extremely energy-intensive process. Moreover, the centre’s focus on better infrastructure and affordable housing to all by 2022 implies this segment is ripe for growth. Our aim is to help businesses like Bharathi make the transition to cleaner energy sources, while saving on their electricity bills.”
Speaking about the experience of installing large-scale solar plants in Andhra Pradesh, amidst the controversy over renegotiating PPAs in the state, Subramanian added, “Fourth Partner Energy has executed over 20 projects in this state for clients like Walmart, Andhra Bank, D-Mart and Visakhapatnam Smart City. Andhra Pradesh aims to add 5 GW of Solar capacity by 2024, and Fourth Partner Energy will continue to work with the government and businesses to help achieve this target.”
Fourth Partner Energy has an operational portfolio of over 180 MWp of distributed solar assets across 23 states, and an additional capacity target of 350 MWp for FY20. The company has also forayed into open access, as well as expanded its footprint to international markets across South Asia, South East Asia and the Middle East, in recent months. The company is also working on energy storage solutions and developing EV infrastructure across India. TPG’s The Rise Fund, which has invested $70mn in the firm.