Solar Power Current Affairs

Diu becomes first Union Territory to run 100% on solar power

Diu has become the first and only Union Territory in the country to be fully run on solar energy. The UT generates total of 13 megawatts (MW) of electricity from solar power generating facilities daily. Of this, 3 MW is generated by rooftop solar plants and 10 MW by its other solar power plants.

Key Facts

Diu’s peak-time demand for electricity goes up to 7 MW and now it daily generates about 10.5 MW of electricity from solar energy, making it electricity surplus. Despite scarcity of land, solar power plants have been installed over more than 50 acres. The solar power also has come as big relief for local residents as their monthly bill charges have fallen by around 12%. It also has significantly reduced electricity loss.

Background

Diu has an area of just 42 square kilometres and population of 56,000. For water and electricity, the Union territory was solely dependent on Gujarat government. The electricity supplied from power grid owned by Gujarat government was causing huge line losses. To overcome this limitation, UT’s administration has decided to set up solar power plants.

Month: Categories: India Current Affairs 2018

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Shakti Sthala: World’s largest solar park launched in Karnataka

The first phase Shakti Sthala solar park having total capacity of 2,000 megawatts (MW) was inaugurated in drought-prone Pavagada region of Tumkur district, Karanataka. It is claimed to be world’s largest solar park.

The park ties in with the Central Government’s scheme to generate 100 gigawatts (GW) of solar power by 2020. It has been executed within record time of two years, with zero land acquisition

Key Facts

The park’s development was initiated with creation of Karnataka Solar Power Development Corp. Ltd (KSPDCL) in March 2015 as joint venture between Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Ltd (KREDL) and Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI).

KSPDCL had used “plug and play” model for development of park, under which it acquires and develops land as blocks for solar power generation, embedded with required government approvals and gives it out to solar power developers (SPDs) through auctions.

The solar park is spread over 13,000 acres and five villages. The land was taken on 25-year lease by government from around 2,300 farmers. In return, these farmers are paid annual rental of Rs.21,000 per acre, with scope for 5% increase every two years.

The first phase of the Rs. 16,500 crore park will generate 600MW power, while the balance 1,400MW will be commissioned in second phase by end year 2018. The park will decrease dependence on traditional power sources and move to environmentally friendly ones to meet growing power needs of state.

It will create employment and act as incentive for natives and farmers to explore new opportunities of socio-economic growth in the region. It will also curb mass migration of people from the region which has been declared drought-hit in 54 of the last 60 years.

Month: Categories: States Current Affairs - 2018

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