Solar Power in India is increasing at a rapid pace and will become one of the biggest energy industries in the next decade as falling costs of solar energy and India’s rising demand makes it a perfect match.Solar Companies in India are constanly growing by the day as firms rush in to take advantage of the vast investment and profit potential in India’s Solar Energy Market.BHEL which is India‚Äôs largest Capitals Good Company has big solar ambitions.BHEL has strong capabilities in the field of making electricity generating equipment.Extending these capabilities in the field of solar power generation is a natural extension.It is following the JV route with various other Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) like HPCL,BEL and IOC to build power plants and solar equipment factories in the country.Most of these JVs have been dormant till now but the JV with BEL is now looking to move on.The JV is scouting for sites to build a 250 MW integrated c-Si Solar Factory which will also have India’s first polysilicon and wafer manufacturing operations.Note India has a large capacity of solar cells and modules but does not have a commercial solar wafer or poly plant which are essential raw materials for making Solar Panels.Till now Solar Panels in India are made from imported Solar Wafers from companies like LDK,GCL,REC,Solarworld and others.There are a few private companies who are looking to set up upstream manufacturing in solar as well.Note there are other Indian government owned PSUs which too are looking to enter Solar Energy Industry as well

Solar Power Plants till a couple of years were quite small compared to the mainstream energy power plants.Most power plants were in the double digit range with no Solar Farms having the capacity of 100 MW or greater.This is in reference to PV Solar Power Plants and not to Solar Thermal Plants which are bigger in size.Note Solar Thermal Plants by the very nature of technology require larger sizes to be economical just like Thermal or Nuclear Power Plants.On the other hand PV Power Plants do not gain much in economies of scale and government prefer giving subsidies to distributed rooftop solar installations rather than large solar farms.

Meyer Burger (MBTN.S) the 6th largest supplier of solar equipment in the world jumped up 2 places by acquiring the 7th largest global solar equipment manufacturer Roth & Rau of Germany for a little over $500 million.The combined company will have revenues of over $900 million overtaking another Germany company Centrotherm with $825 million in revs.Note Applied Materials continues to be the market leader in the solar equipment market with $1.5 billion in solar equipment revenues just like it is the leader in the semiconductor equipment market.Note while European solar module producers have seen their marketshare and revenues crumbling in the face of the Chinese onslaught , there domination of the solar equipment continues. European Solar Companies had found things going tough in 2009 as the solar market changed radically with the Lehman crisis.As the prices of the raw material Polysilicon crashed and Chinese competition increased,these companies started bleeding red ink in a prodigious manner.The high cost structure of these companies with factories in Europe stood naked against the competition.With high debt loads,there was a high chance that these companies would go bankrupt.Most of them like Q-Cells,REC started to move manufacturing to Asia while Solarworld moved to Europe.

South Africa the most economically developed country in the African continent is also is one of the most dependent countries on Coal Energy.Almost 90% of the country’s requirements of Electrcity comes from GHG emitting dirty Thermal Power Plants.Sasol which is a leading energy provider in South Africa is the global leader in Coal to Liquid and Coal to Gas Technologies.In fact most of the Fuel Production in South Africa comes from Sasol plants built long time ago to take advantage of the country’s mineral rices and avoid the oil embargo placed on the country during apartheid.The country’s electricity situation is massively mismanaged with Eskom a monopoly producer and supplier of electricity hardly adding any capacity.This is due to low prices of electricity which now is being added suddenly at 25% each year.This comes after huge shortages slowing down the economy. South Africa has also come up with new Energy Plan which will largely replace Coal Energy by Nuclear and Renewable Sources of Energy.Note South Africa had been in talks to establish a massive solar plants with funding from China which would have used Suntech Solar Panels.There were also rumors of Yingli suppling solar equipment to the country.

Market Vectors KOL ETF provides a good well diversified way to invest in Coal which is seeing a massive upsurge in demand driven by India and China.For investors looking for individual stocks here is a list of US Solar Companies and Stocks and Indian Coal Stocks.China with around 3 Billion Tons of Coal Consumption and India with another 500 million Tons depend on King Coal for majority of their Energy Needs.While China generates 80% of its Electricity from Coal,India generates around 65%.While both countries have Huge Reserves and Production of Coal,their voracious demand is leading to surging imports.These Imports are being sourced from countries like Australia,Canada and USA which are going through Coal Mining Booms.Ports are getting congested as Infrastructure failed to meet the growing coal needs of India and China..The Biggest Advantages of Coal its Abundance and Cheapness of Coal has made it the Fossil Fuel of Choice for Electricity Companies building power plants in developing countries despite its Drawbacks.This has led to a fight to secure Coal Supplies through vertical integration into buying up of coal mines,building ports and railways to transport Coal.Though India too faces some environmental opposition,massive ultra mega power plants with capacity of 4000 MW are getting built by new Indian private utilities.

A number of Agricultural Companies and Green Utilities are focusing on setting up biomass plants in different places in India.Note Biomass Energy accounts for almost 20-30% of the Energy Requirements of the country and is the main source of energy for most of the rural communities for cooking and heating.Biomass Energy is best suited where Crop and Animal Residue are cheaply available.Most of India’s Biomass Power Plants have been built by companies involved in agri industries particularly sugar.Now Rice Companies are finding Biomass Energy perfect for their needs as they generate huge amounts of waste Rice Husk which can be used to generate electricity for their inhouse needs as well as for sale to the power grid.Note on top of this,Rice Biomass Electricity is also eligible for Subsidies from the State Governments.Haryana is seeing a surge in Rice based Electricity Plants with 16 MW installed already.Note Haryana is one of the top agri states in India alongwith Punjab and provides a lot of potential.Note a number of Rice Companies such as Lakshmi Energy and Foods have made Biomass Electricity a key part of their growth strategies even changing their names.Here are a couple of Rice Companies with aggressive Biomass Electricity Plans.