Monthly Archives: August 2012

Solar energy sector speeding in Karnataka

 

From the time when the government introduced a solar energy policy (2011-16) solar sector is on developing ride in Karnataka.

According to a report Renewable Energy prepared by PwC, which was released at the conference on ‘Sustainable Energy Through Renewables’, organised by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), here on Wednesday, Karnataka is the only state to have supported solar projects under the REC (Renewable Energy Certificate) mechanism. Close to 950 Mw of project proposals have been submitted to Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Ltd (KREDL), which are under different stages of implementation like preparation of DPR.

Marvellous progress has been made by Karnataka in solar sector. Already it is having 14 MW installed capacity,  and over 1.2 GW  in the pipeline under various schemes. The 14MW installation is done under  Arunodaya programme by Karnataka Power Corporation Ltd. Of these 3 Mwp each are in Kolar, Belgaum and Raichur and a 5 Mwp in Mandya district in Karnataka. Based on report submitted to CERC in 2010, the energy produced by the 3 MWp in Belgaum was around 3.9 million units.

In a recent bid the government has allotted projects for 80 MW (60 MW for solar PV and 20 Mw for solar thermal) at tariffs between Rs 7.94 to Rs 8.50 per unit for solar PV and  between Rs 10.94 and Rs 11.32 per unit for solar thermal projects.

Karnataka is having one of the highest potentials for renewable energy among all states in India. Renewable sources are contributing to around 24% of the state’s installed capacity. If minor changes are done in the policy framework, Karnataka may come in the top 3 states in terms of annual wind capacity additions. Investors are attracted by the large untapped wind potential and above average wind.

Estimated renewable energy potential is 28 GW. As per the report a total of 17,278 MW, has been allotted from wind, small hydro, co-generation and biomass sectors which is nearly 60 per cent of the full potential. Of this, 2,016 MW is from wind, 88.5 MW from biomass, 948.7 MW from bagasse co-generation, 646 MW small hydro and 14 Mw of solar power have been explored. Most of the sites are far from grid. There is therefore a need to develop a robust and reliable transmission system for extracting the renewable potential. This will definitely help develop Karnataka as a leader.

(Source: Business Standard)

 

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Dairies can now be run on Solar Power

 

Dairy owners used to worry on the unscheduled load shedding during summer or if not that then from bad power quality of electricity supply. They then used do to run diesel generator or use labour for milking their cows and buffaloes at their farms giving them high bills.

On the USP of elimination of noise and cost saving a milking machines operated on solar power is launched. It will now be reducing the electricity bills and labour costs.

“It will be useful for small and medium dairy owners. It is priced at Rs 70,000 and is eligible for subsidy from Karnataka Milk Federation. The quantity of the subsidy varies from one milk producers’ association to the other in the state since each of them has its own norms and rules. A dairy farmer who buys this battery-operated milking machine is eligible for subsidy between Rs25,000 to Rs40,000,’’ said BG Santosh, Sales Manager, Siddon Biotech a Bangalore based company providing solutions in the field of animal nutrition care.

The viability of it comes for them more who uses diesel generator . Other advantages of it is that It is an easy to go machine as it is a trolley-mounted and it has a provision of auxiliary supply from electricity. The machine was brought in limelight during the AgriTech India 2012 in Bangalore.

(Source: DNA India)

 

50 MW 5 phased project in pipieline in Bihar

A US-based agency, Schanti Partners, New York will be developing 50MW project worth Rs 580 crore for a solar energy project in Kaimur district of Bihar. Initially, a 10MW unit would be setup. They have received approval letter from Bihar State Investment Promotion Board, no-objection letter from Bihar Renewable Energy Development Agency (BREDA),and the proposal is submitted to Bihar State Electricity Board (BSEB).

Intention is to have a 12.5Rs/unit PPA of 25 years with BSEB.

A fully-owned subsidiary of Schanti Partners LLC ‘Sparkle Solar Bihar I’ will be executing the project. The project will be developed in a phase of 10 MW in 5 phases. The equipment would be sourced from Sol Focus Inc. , a US solar equipment manufacturer. An official marking the importance of project said “With the setting up of this solar energy plant, Bihar will emerge as a leader in solar energy development among eastern states of India”.

The project will use the most recent version of photovoltaic technology called Concentrating Photovoltaic (CPV) system; it is the PV technology with an optical system that focuses sunlight over a large area onto each cell.

The agency would not be taking help from Bihar industrial land bank. As per the proposal, the land would be leased for 30 years term directly from the owners, in lieu of annual lease payments to them.

The financing for the project has already been secured, with a letter of intent(LOI) from the Export-Import Bank of the US. The letter of intent provides for approximately $30 million in financial support with factors depending on extent of US-made solar power equipment.

Kaimur district has robust electricity infrastructure for power evacuation, with grid connectivity and nearby electrical substations. Power lines of 33kV and 132kV and electrical substations are already in place in the district.

Allocation of 175MW of grid-connected solar power projects was granted last year by Bihar Solar Policy.

(Source: India Times)

BEST going to reduce energy bills through Solar PV

 

BEST undertaking has decided to deploy solar power on an experimental basis to provide electricity to its 25 bus depots across the city.

BEST bus depots have lakhs of rupees electricity bills annually, more of for western and eastern suburbs. A senior official said “Electricity is needed to light up the depot almost round the clock, to run various equipment to maintain and clean buses and at the various offices within the depots”. First 3 depots will be run on solar. “We will gradually shift to solar energy at all the depots”, the official stated. Although not officially announced but as per the sources BEST would begin with depots in the suburbs and gradually include other prominent depots like Colaba and Backbay in south Mumbai in the second phase.

BEST General Manager Om Prakash Gupta said, “We are keen on experimenting with solar power. We will invite bids from parties willing to provide the service to us. As a pilot project, we will start with three depots”. It was Mr Ravi Raja, BEST committee member who at a recent committee meeting suggested that BEST should install solar panels at the depots. He said, “In the suburbs, we purchase power from RInfra at a very high cost. If we switch to solar power, the initial investment could be costly, but we will save a lot of money in the long run.”

A discussion for inclusion of LED also took place where BEST panel Chairperson Ashok Patil suggested in its favour for obtaining 60% power saving. However, Gupta said that they were not “cost-effective” when tried over few depots

The BEST 25 depots across the city are used for parking the fleet of 4,680 buses.

 

Pune to get its Solar City soon

 

The Draft for the Detailed Project Report (DPR) for the Pune’s solar city has got the green signal by the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC).

This project is the initiative by the Central Government” which aims at reducing the use of electricity and reducing the carbon footprint,” as the pollution is on increase in the city which must be controlled and the natural resources for the energy need to be deployed in the city for present and future benefit of the citizens as well as the climate.

As there are mainly three sources of the carbon production and the GHG gases such as

  • Transportation
  • Water treatment plants and
  • Electricity

The execution of this project will lead to the following things

  • Reducing the carbon production
  • Promotion of the renewable energy sources like Solar energy
  • Reduction in the usage of the electricity by at least 10%.

The DPR will include the following points and the emphasis will be on the below mentioned issues …such as

  • How to promote solar energy?
  • How to reduce the electricity usage of streetlights and other public lighting systems?

The fund for this project will be provided by the central government explained by Mr. Mahesh Pathak during the general body meeting.

(Source: Times Of India)

 

4337 solar lanterns would be distributed to the shepherds of Himachal Pradesh by the state Government

 

The Chief Minister of the state Prof. Prem Kumar Dhumal revealed that the shepherds of the state would get the 4337 solar lanterns. This was announced while he was addressing the state level function organized to observe Akshay Urja Divas (Non-Conventional Energy Day) to commemorate 69th birth anniversary of former Prime Minister of India, late Shri Rajiv Gandhi. He also flagged off ‘Akshya Urja Rally’ of students here today.

 

Use of the renewable energy would provide of the additional power in the state as the State has vast potential of renewable energy such as solar, wind and biomass energy which can be exploited to supplement the hydel power generation in the State explained by the chief minister.

He also said that the some of the projects in the state are still going on and some are to be installed.

As there is a

  • Solar Energy Park at Dr. Y.S. Parmar Horticulture and Forestry University Nauni in Solan, near completion.
  • And one such park was being set up at NIT, Hamirpur
  • A 4 KW Solar Power Plant would be installed in the offices of all Deputy Commissioners in the State.

 

There was a message to the youth of the state from the Chief Minister  to save the energy to mark the ‘Akshya Urja Divas’ and also play  the important role in inspiring every section of the society.

Natural aspects of the states were also dealt while addressing the function, and according to the wordings of the chief minister the maximum use of renewable energy would not only save the natural resources but also offer people with healthy living. People need to learn living in harmony with the nature.

Prof. Dhumal also released ‘Urja Sandesh’ magazine brought out by HIMURJA and explained about nine point environment pledge which was being administered to the students in the schools.

The prominent personalities who were present the function includes Shri Arun Sharma, Deputy Commissioner, Shri Harsh Mitter, Chief Executive Officer, HIMURJA with some other prominent persons.

 

(Source: Indian Power Sector)

 

Indian Solar Manufacturers facing a tough time with US Fast Start Finance policy

 

According to the CSE (the Delhi-based Centre for Science and Environment) says that the Indian solar panel industry is being killed by the conditions placed by the US as part of its initiative on climate fast-start finance.

The Indian developers are having the opportunity of getting loans at very low interest rates from the US Exim Bank and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation if the equipment, solar panels and cells are sourced from US companies, according to the CSE.

Mr Chandra Bhushan, deputy director (CSE) says that the result of this is that most of the orders are being bagged by US companies rather than local manufacturers, putting the domestic solar photo-voltaic industry at risk.

Mr Chandra Bhushan also spread the light about the Fast start finance, according to Mr Bhushan…

  • Fast start finance is a $30 billion fund set up under the aegis of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC).
  • The fund, adopted at the Copenhagen climate meet in 2009, is meant to help developing nations deal with the impact of climate change and limit greenhouse gas emissions, says Bhushan.

Whereas the US is manipulating this and has been using this fund to promote its own solar manufacturing.

This has distorted the market completely in favour of US companies.”

  • Currently, 80 % of local manufacturers are in a state of forced closure and debt restructuring with no orders coming to them,
  • While the US manufacturers are getting orders from Indian solar power developers, according to the CSE. The Centre has been promoting solar power projects since 2010 as part the National Action Plan on Climate Change.

The Indian Government is also promoting its own manufacturing by giving subsidy to the Indian manufactured products. The good thing is that Indian govt. is not manipulating any UNCC fund for its own benefit as the US is doing.

Indian Govt must take initiative to get its Domestic manufacturing out of this trouble and for the promotion also.

Some of the initiative taken by the Indian govt. and the loophole are explained below

Under The Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM), which plans to install 22,000 MW of solar energy by 2022, It is mandatory that

  • All projects must buy domestically-manufactured equipment,
  •  It only specifies this in the case of crystalline PV technology,
  • This is not applicable fort thin-film PV.
  • According to the CSE researchers this has provided a loophole for the US Exim Bank and OPIC to offer low rates of interest (about 3%) and a long repayment schedule (of up to 18 years) to Indian solar project developers provided they buy thin-film panels manufactured by US companies.

If we see Quality wise the thin films are lower as compared to the crystalline one.

As far as the Indian Banks are concerned the Loans from Indian banks come with an interest rate of close to 14% or more.

This Process of higher loan has skewed the market completely in favour of thin-film panels imported from the US, despite the fact that these are less efficient than crystalline panels.

Almost 60% of panels installed in India are thin-film, while globally its only 14%. This hike in the use of Thin film is mainly due to the easily availability of loans which compromises the quality factor of the panels.

This shows that the continuous use of thin films will surely have an impact on the Clients output and the Perception regarding the Solar efficiency in India.

Might be it is possible that the people lose hope in this sector as this just the beginning in India because the quality output is on stake with the increase use of less efficient panels.

(Source: Economic Times)

 

UP to have its own solar policy for the term 2012-2017

 

Very soon UP will be having its own solar power policy. It is expected to form the guidelines for private parties and other organisations for setting up of solar power plants. Further, the UP chief secretary asked all districts DMs to identify land pockets in their villages for setting up of solar power plants.

The task of establishing solar plants in villages has been entrusted to UPNEDA the state renewable energy agency. UP has proposed to set up solar power plants to achieve 1,000 MWs of production till 2017.

The state government is planning to utilise the barren tracts of land in the villages where they can easily get the 5 acres of land per MW of solar plant developed.

As per UPNEDA officials, private players will be encouraged to set up solar power plants. For 2012-17 the Akhilesh Yadav led government has given thrust to solar power and for the first time a solar power policy will be soon implemented in the state.

Bundelkhand region will be at prime importance for establishing solar power plants.

Apart from rebates and other promotions from central government, several incentives to private players who will set up solar power plants. For the proposed growth of the sector generation using PV technology will be treated as industry and as such all incentives under industrial policy of the state will be available to solar power plants.

(Source: Times of India)

 

Gujarat Solar Canal Top Project to be replicated in Karnataka

 

The Karnataka State government has planned that to lift water from the  solar panels which will be installed  along the irrigation canals to generate power. The project will be implemented in Yadgir, Raichur and Bijapur districts in the first phase.

Mr. Basavaraj Bommai State’s Water Resources Minister said here on Wednesday that it had been planned to install 10,000 solar panels along the 1 lakh kilometer length of irrigation canals.

The minister was in the city to take part in Independence Day celebrations

Bommai said that a private company will execute the project on a pilot basis for a 5 kilometre-length.Such a project had been successfully implemented in Gujarat.

“Rural areas are not getting adequate power supply and hence farmers are unable to draw water from canals. With the installation of solar panels, each village can get up to five mega watt of power to meet energy demand for households and for farming activities,” the minister said.

(Source: Deccan Herald)

 

Generation of Power under JNNSM

 

India has separated targets for 2013 1100MW of grid connected & 20,000 MW by 2022 under the JNNSM, this information was given in written by Dr. Farooq Abdulla the Union Minister of New and Renewable Energy in Rajya Sabha, and the total investment may be approximately $ 40 billion for 20,000 MW of solar power projects.

205340.26 MW is the current installed generation capacity of India which includes

  • 24832.68 MW generated through renewable energy sources.
  • JNNSM aims at achieving 20,000 MW by 2022 thereby it will then constitute one-tenth of India’s current installed power base.
  • The total installed capacity in the country is likely to be more than 400 GW by 2022.
  •  Installed solar capacity then would be one-twentieth of the then India’s total installed capacity.
  • The share of renewable and particularly solar in country’s energy mix would keep increasing and would certainly help in limiting reliance on coal and easing the power deficit.

1030 MW of solar power projects have been commissioned and connected to grid  against a target of 1100 MW of grid connected solar power by 2013, and  these are under both Central and State initiatives according to theThe Minister .

Followings are the steps which are to be taken and the issues to be handled for the completion of the target and projects under the JNNSM by the Govt. & other respected departments

  • like up gradation of transmission network,
  • availability of unallocated power for bundling,
  • delay in payment by DISCOMS,
  • Weak State Nodal Agencies are being focused on.
  •  A transmission network up gradation plan has been prepared by Power Grid Corporation of India Limited.
  • Ministry of Power has been requested for giving unallocated power.
  • Payments from DISCOMS are being monitored continuously and States are being requested to upgrade Nodal Agencies.

 

All the above information tells us that there are serious steps which are to taken seriously for this growing industry to flourish and for the India to be a Major Player in the field of renewable energy.

(Source: India Power Sector)