Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Jaya hints at a solar surprise to solve the power crisis

CHENNAI: Jaya hints at a solar surprise to solve the power crisis 

Chennai: The newly formed AIADMK government is planning to go green' to provide abundant power to the state. At a meeting held at the secretariat on Tuesday, Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa hinted at measures to augment power resources and reduce the inconvenience caused by load shedding. She said she had a surprise' for the people, but was unwilling to divulge details. Sources said that her government, in a bid to tap readily available power resources, is proposing to promote solar power. Inspired by the Karnataka government's passion for solar power projects, the AIADMK government plans to create 10 solar energy parks in the state of 300 MW capacities each. The cost of setting up a 1 MW facility is Rs 10 crores, hence it would cost at least Rs 30,000 crore for the entire project.

"The initial investment is a question. But the government is planning to get financial assistance from central government and international funding agencies," said a source. Jayalalithaa has also reportedly told government offices in the state to figure out ways of installing rooftop solar plants so they can be off the grid in six months. "Every building will generate 200 kV to 300 kV, which can meet their needs," said the source. The project could get a 30% subsidy from the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission, sources said. The rest of the expenses can be managed using the budget allocated to each government office and funding by the state government. "Billions of units of Tamil Nadu Electricity Board (TNEB) power can be saved if all the offices go solar," said a senior government official. Besides, the state government will also start generating 1,000 MW of electricity from waste. Nearly 160 plants will be set up in local bodies. "Every plant will be able to generate five to seven MW," an advisor said. Some experts are skeptical about the plan. "This is a costly affair. Solar power is one of the most expensive forms of power generation. Wind power fluctuates and is therefore not reliable," he said. Besides, suppliers of solar plants complain that it is difficult to get subsidy from the central government. "The state government itself should give some concessions. Then more people, including residential complexes, will opt for solar energy," he said.

No comments: