Environment research institute The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) has entered into a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with mobile cell sites operator Indus Towers Ltd to develop renewable energy through solar, wind and biomass technologies and energy-efficient solutions to help telecom oerators reduce their dependance on conventional fossil fuels responsible for causing environmental damage.
TERI is headed by economist and Nobel Prize winning climate scientist, Dr R K Pachauri, who sahred the award with former US vice president Al Gore (See: UN climate panel chief Rajendra Pachauri shares Nobel Peace Prize with former US vice president Al Gore)
A joint venture of Vodafone, Bharti, and Idea Cellular, Indus Towers Ltd has been incorporated to provide shared telecom infrastructure to telecom operators across the world on a nondiscriminatory basis. (See: Bharti, Idea and Vodafone Essar float joint venture tower company)
"Indus Towers plans to deploy Green Energy initiatives on its sites," said the German CEO of Indus Towers Ltd Stefan Langkamp, adding it was a management responsibility to lead the company "towards visible improvement in environment protection by reducing carbon emissions."
Indus says it will deploy innovative energy sources as a differentiator for itself in the market place. Accordingly, it has retained TERI to provide technical consultancy for wind farm development for the project.
The two organisations say they will also focus on developing renewable energy supply options for telecom shelters and mobile power plant prototype development.
"This is a pioneering thought to use environmental strategy to innovate, create value and build competitive advantage," said M M Joshi, director, enterprise and technology development, TERI. "The MoU is an example of far-sightedness and will benefit the end-users and the society in the long-run. It is a matter of time before all other sectors catch up with this trend of energy shift."
Moreover, Indus Towers' sites are spread across the country, maing it diffcult for the company to manage them without a grid backup, requiring a customised solution aligned to the local environment. To develop a grid backup the two organisations have set up a TERI-IndusLab, where Indus Towers has set up a standard shelter along with the passive infrastructure in TERI's campus at Gual Pahari along with stimulated BTS loads.
TERI will study the existing load requirement of the shelter and assess the energy efficiency / conservation measures, along with experimenting with different renewable energy options.
Amit Kumar, drector, at TERI's energy environment technology division, said, "TERI would analyze Indus's telecom shelter design critically in order to explore the possibilities of demand -side management as well as renewable energy resources based supply side options. It is hoped that these practical solutions would enable mobile service providers in meeting their universal service obligations even in those areas where there is either no grid electricity or it is very erratic."
In addition TERI will customise a Euro container-based mobile power plant prototype based on renewable energy system suited for local conditions.