Biomass Power Plants are increasing rapidly as the costs of fossil fuels go up and the need for renewable energy is increasing.Biomass Power is attractive because of its clean character and supplies a large portion of the energy needs in rural communities.With advancements in gasifier technology and energy conversion,biomass power plants have become quite popular.Biomass Power Plants are increasing in scale from around 20-50 MW to more than 100 MW as the technology has advanced quite a bit.The only problem for these large plants is securing feedstock for these power plants and storing them.Biomass Energy has a number of advantages over conventional forms of energy and depending on the feedstock cost can be generated at prices on par with fossil fuels.Biomass Energy also leads to higher energy security as biomass is almost always secured locally.

Coal Demand in India is surging as the power companies set up thermal power plants at an astounding rate to triple the power capacity over the next decade.Soaring Coal Prices have already made the Global Electricity Prices shoot up and its probably going to increase more in the coming decade.China is the world’s largest producer and consumer of coal accounting almost for the 50% of the world’s output at 3 Billion Tons.India is far behind at 400 million tons but will fast catch up given the prodigious rate of power plant building that is happening.The Environment is probably going for a toss as India has allowed “No-Go” Forested Areas to be mined.This plus China and India are importing more and more coal from Australia,South Africa and the USA.The recent looking in Australia saw coal prices shoot up alarmingly.Coal India the world’s largest coal producing company recently increased the coal price from its shockingly low price leading cement makers and utilities to raise prices more than 5-10%.While its strange for a green blog to recommend coal stocks,the opportunity does exist over the next 10 years till renewable energy comes to grid parity and policymakers don’t come to their senses.Here is a list of coal stocks/companies in India .Note there are not many major private coal companies as in the early 1970s, all privately owned coal producing companies were nationalized under the Coal Mines (Nationalisation) Act.

India may uses the planned $500 million to $1 Billion in Coal Taxes it expects to generate every year to build transmission lines for renewable energy.Note one of the main impediments for renewable energy is the lack of transmission capability on part of utilities to move clean energy from remote areas to urban demand centres.USA faces an acute problem in this regard and faces a massive debate on how to fund the power grid from windy areas to cities.India too faces a problem in this regard as renewable energy plants mainly wind and solar are to built in remote locations.Note India’s Power Grid is very inadequate as large parts of the country lack electricity due to lack of distribution networks.

Australia is the biggest exporter of coal in the world and one of the leading emitter of GHG emissions.Its huge mining industry generate tons of carbon and earns billions for the Australian Treasury.However despite its leading role in global warming,Australia has almost no subsidies for green energy.The federal government has conveniently used the recent Queensland Floods to cut off a number of Green Programs such as Green Car Innovation Fund, Cleaner Car Rebate Scheme, the Carbon Capture and Storage Flagships and Solar Flagships, the Solar Hot Water Rebate, Green Start Program, Solar Homes and Communities Plan.The Solar Flagships Program which was supposed to generate around 1 GW of Solar Energy has also been killed.Note Australia generate 92% of its electricity from Fossil Fuel which is quite high compared to other developed countries.

Solar Panel Prices have decreased at a jaw dropping 50% in the last 2 years and will probably decrease 10-15% more in 2011.That is an astounding number given the increasing energy and electricity prices being faced around the globe.Though solar energy is costlier than other forms of energy,it starts on a low base.With 2010 solar growth pegged at more than 100% and 16 GW of solar panels installed,Solar Energy is starting to become more mainstream.Like Solar,the entry of Chinese players has decreased the cost of Wind Energy as well.Despite increasing input steel and copper prices,wind turbine prices have declined.Stiff competition amongst Chinese WTG companies has made the price of a Wind Turbine go as low as $600,000-700,000 in China.This has brought a depression in prices in other places in the world as well.

India’s Environment Ministry Jairam Ramesh has been portrayed as the devil incarnate by the industrial lobbies as he has struck down various billion dollar realty, mining and power projects.First it was Vedanta’s mining project in Orissa,then the Lavasa township in Pune and then power projects in Andhra Pradesh.While some of these infrastructure projects should go ahead with modifications,it has brought some regard for the environment.While some of the projects like the Jaitapur Nuclear Plant in Maharashtra were given the environmental go-ahead despite serious concerns raised by TISS and local citizens,the trampling of ecology by the corporate lobbies seems to have been curtailed.However India’s growing economy and its massive energy needs cannot be kept at bay for long.