In a major boost to the solar power generation in India, World’s largest ever rooftop solar plant was inaugurated in Punjab on Tuesday. Spread over 82 acres on the outskirts of Beas town of Amritsar, the 11.5 MW solar energy plant is situated above the spiritual campus of Dera Baba Jaimal Singh. The plant was built at the cost of Rs. 139 crore by the Radha Soami Satsang Beas and commissioned by Tata Power Solar over the period of six months.
The plant is set to generate 150 lakh units of electricity annually, which means it can power 8000 houses at once. Bikram Singh Majithia, who is Punjab’s Renewable Energy Minister, said that the offset of four lakh tonnes of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) from the project in the next 25 years, would be equivalent to planting nearly 2 lakh trees. “Investment in the renewable energy sector in Punjab has surged from Rs. 82 crore in 2012 to nearly Rs. 10,000 crore today. It promises employment to 12,500 people,” said the minister.
The plant was inaugurated by Punjab CM Prakash Singh Badal who only had good things to say about the initiative. Around one crore devotees visit the Dera Baba Jaimal Singh annually and the solar panel would serve as a good reminder for environment conservation.
India’s aim to increase its solar capacity to 100GW by 2022 looks promising with this set up. December 2015 also saw the formation of International Solar Alliance with 120 countries in the COP21 Climate conference.
This news comes shortly after the World Bank’s announcement of approving a $625 million loan to support India Solar Power grid connection. Currently, only 42% of Indian villages have been electrified so far.
Feature Image Courtesy: Newsmarg.com
Words by Preksha Malu