Adani Group: from coal giant to renewable energy pioneer

Written on 23 October 2020

In Europe, the name of Adani Group is relatively unknown, except to those who have an interest in energy or large international investments. In Asia and Oceania, however, this name has been famous since the 1990s. The Adani Group is an Indian multinational operating throughout the subcontinent, but also in Australia and Malaysia. Over the years, it has been involved in commodity trading, energy production, financial services, and much more. After having been a coal giant for years, with a portfolio that included mines, ports, power and thermal power plants, and the largest amount of imported coal in the whole of India, Adani Group decided to change direction, becoming the largest solar energy producer in the world.

The Adani Group’s journey towards clean energy

The last phase of Adani Group‘s evolution began in 2015 when Adani Renewable Energy Park signed a pact with the Rajasthan government for the creation of India’s largest solar power plant.  Today Adani’s clean energy production capacity exceeds last year’s entire output in the USA and it is estimated that the clean energy produced in this way could correspond to a reduction in CO2 emissions of 1.4 billion tonnes during the plants’ lifetime. Despite this impressive result, Adani’s journey into renewable energy is far from over and the acquisition of new assets is currently underway to create a portfolio that includes wind and solar power plants.

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The synergy between individuals and institutions

The story of the Adani Group’s rapid evolution from coal giant to renewable energy pioneer is not only a story of private enterprise and asset management, but has a lot to do with the role of institutions. In fact, the company has worked closely with the government of Narendra Modi, which in 2015, at the COP 21 International Solar Alliance meeting in Paris, expressed its intention to encourage India’s transition to clean energy. Adani Green Energy Limited, a subsidiary of the original group and a public subsidiary since 2018, has been instrumental in this project. Thanks to this synergy of public and private commitment, it has been able to become the most important solar operator in the world in less than two years. This is an unprecedented achievement in the energy production industry.

Development, employment, and health

Gautam Adani, the founder of the group, expressed his satisfaction with the excellent results achieved and underlined the countless possibilities that the new renewable energy platform will open up for all the countries in which it operates. These opportunities are strictly related to the energy sector and the competitiveness and efficiency of the service, but also to employment growth and public health – thanks to projects that allow the distribution of clean water where the normal water network has not yet reached. Adani also intends to expand its interests in all areas of clean energy production, such as research and the use of alternative fuels in agriculture and industry.