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Electricity through rooftop solar power plants in Odisha’s 15 towns

In its bid to harness the green energy potential, Odisha plans to set up solar panels on rooftops of government buildings in 15 key towns.

The towns identified are Rourkela, Burla, Sambalpur, Hirakud, Balasore, Bhadrak, Baripada, Berhampur, Chakradharpur, Koraput, Sunabeda, Nabarangpur, Khurda and Puri.

“Odisha is betting big on non-conventional sources of energy. The state government has approved a proposal for taking up rooftop installations on the government buildings in 15 key towns,” said an official.

The Green Energy Development Company Ltd (Gedcol), the nodal agency for implementation of renewable energy projects, will implement 10 megawatts (Mw) rooftop projects at a cost of around Rs 80 crore by 2017-18, added the official.

Recently, the Odisha government has signed implementation agreement with Azure Power Mercury Pvt Ltd for developing the country’s first grid-connected Mw scale rooftop project on the net metering basis. It will be a four Mw project to be set up on about 190 government buildings in the twin cities of Cuttack and Bhubaneswar. The green energy project will attract around Rs 35 crore private investment and will be implemented by availing central financial assistance through Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE).

Odisha receives an average solar radiation of 5.5kWh/sqm area with an average capacity utilisation factor ranging from 15 to 17 per cent across the districts, and around 300 clear sunny days every year.

The state government targets to generate 70 Mw exclusively from rooftop solar projects by 2022. The state government, in its newly approved Renewable Energy Policy-2016, plans to add 2200 Mw capacity of solar energy by 2022.

This year, the state power regulator – Odisha Electricity Regulatory Commission (OERC) has allowed Rs 30 crore in the annual revenue requirement (ARR) of bulk power purchaser Gridco for 2016-17 exclusively towards the purchase of additional quantum of renewable energy.

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