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Odisha approves twin city rooftop solar project

IFC and Green Energy Corp to sign agreements soon

BS Reporter  |  Bhubaneswar 

The state government has approved a proposal for installation of solar panels on roof tops of all government establishments in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack area under PPP (public private partnership) model and directed the implementing agency to sign agreements with International Finance Corporation (IFC) for the purpose

"Government has been pleased to approve the proposal for implementation of solar rooftop project within twin cities of Cuttack and Bhubaneswar," said Sangramjit Nayak, joint secretary in the state energy department to managing director of Odisha Hydro Power Corporation Ltd (OHPC) in a letter.

He further directed OHPC to take necessary steps for signing of agreement between Green Energy Development Corporation (GEDCOL), a wholly owned subsidiary of OHPC and IFC for project financing.

GEDCOL was recently created to develop and maintain carbon-free energy infrastructures in the state.

The solar project is aimed at reducing ever-increasing power bills of government offices. The government has been pulled up by the high court for not clearing large amount of pending power bills in a tariff hike case.

In October last year, the state government had decided to set up solar lighting systems on rooftop of all government offices starting 2013-14. The project also mandates that solar heating system should be installed at all government-run hostels and guest houses to trim power bills.

In the first year of the implementation, the government has decided to use the office rooftops of government offices, agencies, directorates and state PSUs situated in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack, and later the scheme will be extended to other cities in the state.

Last week, the government declared that the newly established GEDCOL would be the nodal agency for on-grid solar energy projects whereas off-grid generation such as solar cooking, pumping, refrigeration, heating and industrial process would remain under the ambit of Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA).

GEDCOL's mandate will be to plan, organise and implement projects and sell power anywhere in the country with special emphasis on on-grid generation. It will conduct and facilitate technical soundness and pre-feasibility study and investigate renewable energy projects.

Currently the state generates 8 Mw solar power by small producers and plans to produce at least 80 Mw in next three years. It has the potential to generate nearly 10,000 MW solar energy, as per a study conducted by the state government.

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First Published: Wed, September 11 2013. 20:23 IST