• Increased warming in the Indian Ocean and the resultant weakening of the Indian summer monsoon may come in the way of India’s goal of leading the world’s wind power generation.
  • Analysing the available wind and atmospheric data from 1980-2016, researchers from Harvard University, U.S., and National Climate Center in Beijing, China, found the potential electricity production of windmills across India had decreased by about 13%.
  • And this trend might continue.
  • However, researchers in India have raised doubts about the results of the study.
  • The data used by the team does not correlate with the live data we have.
  • We have started additional studies to validate these results and will publish the findings soon,”
  • The researchers showed a decline in electricity production in the States of Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Karnataka.
  • No significant decline was seen in Tamil Nadu, which is located on the east coast and, thus, had different wind conditions during summer.
  • The government could concentrate on setting up more projects in this region [Tamil Nadu] as the lifetime of wind turbines is 20 to 30 years.
  • The researchers showed that 63% of the annual production of electricity from wind is contributed by winds in spring (March-May) and summer (June-August).
  • Interestingly, they found a decrease in wind power during these months. This could be due to the weakening of the Indian summer monsoon during this period.

What about the Summer winds?

  • Summer winds in India are driven by the temperature contrast between the Indian subcontinent and the Indian Ocean, and the warming in the Indian Ocean reduced this contrast.
  • Also, warming of the Equatorial Indian Ocean resulted in a decline in the wind speed.
  • The Indian government has set a target of 60 GW of cumulative wind power capacity by 2022.
  • The researchers say that this goal can be beneficial only if planners in India take these historical reconstructions into account while setting up wind power installations in the future