German company TÜV SÜD, one of the world’s leading technical service organisations, has been in India since 1994. The company is in the testing, inspection and certification consultancy business across various sectors like renewable energy, water services, CDM, food, textile and plastics. J.K. Rajan, in an email interaction with Lalitha Rao, talks about green initiatives in infrastructure projects.
Given India’s plans for major investment in infrastructure, what are the opportunities that TÜV SÜD looks forward to?
Infrastructure projects are cost extensive with a long gestation period, making it imperative to conduct due diligence and risk assessment analysis to ensure the desired ROI. This analysis is required to be done before the project commences. Once the project is announced and in process, project management consultancy is required to maintain, monitor and analyse the project on a regular basis. TÜV SÜD with local experience and global expertise provides a complete range of services and methodology to assist in faster, safer and efficient project implementation through a wide range of testing, inspection and certification services.
India is increasingly focusing on green projects, even in infrastructure sector. What are your plans?
The green initiative with regard to infrastructure in India is still compliance driven but slowly transforming to market driven. TÜV SÜD caters to this segment with a wide range of services that not only covers infrastructure projects but also power plant, building, heavy industries, agriculture and utility etc. To serve this segment, we have invested in a state-of-the-art laboratory approved by the Ministry of Environment and Forests that caters to various testing needs. Besides this, services extended also include detailed environmental and social impact assessments, water footprint, carbon reduction, carbon management related certifications or green building facilitations, waste management or energy efficiency services.
In addition, for green renewable projects, TÜV SÜD is already working with a series of project developers and investors in the area of technical due diligence, owners engineering and plant certification.
Five years from now where would India be in terms of green infrastructure?
India will be among top 25 countries in the world in green infrastructure with the latest technology and sustainability solutions. India now has 2,285 registered buildings under Indian Green Building Council (IGBC); 427 Rated Green Buildings; 1.72 billion sq. ft green building footprint and 1,147 IGBC accredited professionals, which is one of the highest in the world. It is expected that success in the building sector will also replicate in other infrastructure projects in the years to come.
What are the different types of certificates and accreditations required for green projects in India?
Besides the Ministry of Environment and Forests clearance for infrastructure and industrial projects, certifications like Green Building (LEED) and GRIHA for building sectors are available. Green Building is driven by a US-based associate body while GRIHA is driven by TERI. For both certifications, accredited professionals are required. There are many carbon management related certifications (accredited and unaccredited) that are also available in India for project owners to benefit from.
Can you talk about best practices in safety during and after project implementation?
During implementation of projects, there is a need to adhere to best practices in safety through all the stages. Companies like TÜV SÜD, besides assisting in this process of evaluating and monitoring the safety measures implemented, also provide training programmes to generate awareness and seed safety aspects as a culture rather than a process. It is important to have a focused approach of regular safety auditing and inspection of projects during construction, commissioning and post-commissioning stage.
India is leading in solar and wind power projects more than in waste-to-energy projects.
TÜV SÜD in India is one of the leading service providers to the solar and wind power projects. Though waste-to-energy segment is at a very nascent stage in India, our global competencies in this space ensure that we are prepared to render services in waste-to-energy sector.