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Solar Conference: Concern over poor show in Odisha


Reported by Santosh Jagdev
Bhubaneswar, Oct 31:

Admitting that renewable energy generation, whether solar, wind or tide,  in Odisha is abysmally poor, Science and Technology minister Pradeep Kumar Panigrahy today said it is time sincere efforts are made for the generation of renewable power by both state and Central governments  with the involvement of  various stakeholders.

SOLAR POWER PLANT Panigrahy was speaking at the 3rd Odisha Solar Conference, a state-level convention on ‘Development of Solar Industry in Odisha’, organised by Cleantech Special Interest Group (SIG) of TiE Bhubaneswar Chapter, along with Canyon Consultancy and supported by the ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), government of India.

Solar energy is the most promising resource among the available renewable energy options which can light up many households as a large number of remote areas in Odisha do not have access to electricity.

“Our state has ample opportunities and resources to develop infrastructure for solar power generation. For this the Green Energy Development Corporation of Odisha Ltd (GEDCOL) is working in collaboration with Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA) and engaging other entrepreneurs and investors for development of renewable energy in the state,” the minister said.

Dr Praveen Saxena, adviser to ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) and Director General of National Solar Energy Institute, quoted the Prime Minister’s message for this conference which said “It is the high time for the country to go for utilisation of non-conventional energy resources”.

Dr Saxena said, “MNRE is preparing a road map to give a boost to solar energy generation in the country. By 2022 it has targeted to increase solar energy generation from the present  2.53 lakh MW capacity produced in the country now by another to 20,000 MW through a centrally sponsored programme, Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM) launched in January 2010.”

MNRE has also planned to develop 25 solar parks, each with a capacity of 500 MW to 1000 MW to be built within a period of 5 years. It has also announced a good budget for large scale solar power projects, solar power irrigation pumps and canal top solar power projects during FY 2014-15, Saxena added.

The principal secretary of Forest and Environment R K Sharma said his department has been entrusted with the task of  formulating and implementing the Odisha Climate Change Action Plan (OCCAP) which includes the target of providing  energy security to the state by promoting solar energy.

“It is our continuous endeavour to work with our sister departments of Energy and Science and Technology to develop this sector both in large and small scale. So far Odisha has only developed 27 MW solar power capacity and another 30 MW capacity solar power projects are under construction,” Sharma said.

Experts who took part in the deliberations said the state government needs to get over the ‘Solar Power Policy (SSPP) paralysis’  and be sincere about its its resolve to generate solar power. They also advised the state government to revamp GEDCOL and to prepare a road map to implement the solar power projects in Odisha with the required scale and speed so that the state could produce a cumulative solar power capacity of 1000 MW by the end of March 31, 2017 and 5000 MW by the end of 2022.