The state of Gujarat in north western India is working actively to exploit its vast resources of wind, solar and tidal energy to establish an international hub for renewable power. With the longest coastline of any Indian state and numerous inshore water management projects, Gujarat has the potential to develop tidal and hydrokinetic energy into substantial contributors to the electricity mix.
The Gulf of Kutch and the Gulf of Khambhat were identified as areas of rich offshore resource with good development potential, and Atlantis is now pursuing a 250MW project in the Gulf of Kutch with Gujarat Power Corporation Limited (GPCL). Tidal power is well suited to Gujarat’s distributed generation model, and the resultant job creation is aligned with India’s broader inclusive growth agenda. Since 2009, Atlantis has been working with GPCL to complete the concept design and consenting for a 250MW project in the Gulf of Kutch.
The primary development site is located towards the centre of the mouth of the Gulf of Kutch, fewer than 17km to the south of Mandvi Beach, which is adjacent to the proposed onshore site at Maska. The Ranwara Shoals, to the north of the site, create a shallow region through which flow is accelerated, resulting in ideal deployment conditions for the tidal turbines. The site experiences less extreme flows than, for example, the Pentland Firth and the Bay of Fundy, and our initial optimisation studies indicate that 1MW AR1000 turbines will deliver the best returns for the project. This work will be further developed during FEED.
The project has been well supported at state and national level, ensuring expeditious procurement of the necessary approvals. The Gujarat state government has awarded grant funding to GPCL to support FEED studies for the first 50MW of the commercial project and to enable a tariff to be set which will generate sufficient returns to attract investors. GPCL and Atlantis are now working to compile and submit the information required to substantiate the level of the required tidal power tariff.
The project is currently the largest planned tidal array in Asia, and an important precursor to future development of other opportunities in the state, both offshore and inland. India, and Gujarat in particular, is enacting an ambitious programme of incentives to increase renewable generation capacity to ensure a clean and secure energy future, and this renders it an attractive and important market for Atlantis.