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Karnataka sets solar energy target at 200MW

According to reports, to make the best use of renewable energy resources, the state government has decided to extend solar street lighting across the state. Speaking at the fourth edition of Solarcon India 2012 on Monday, chief minister Jagadish Shettar said the state government is eyeing the solar energy target of 200 MW by 2016.

“Our government has made it mandatory for all new houses to install solar water heaters. Apart from that, the government and local authorities have taken the initiative to install large number of solar street lights and signals within Bangalore and a few other cities,’’ Shettar said.

The state government is giving a thrust to solar power sector by implementing a new renewable energy policy. It has added 441 MW of renewable energy including wind and solar during 2011-12.

“In our budget 2012-13, we’ve proposed to set up a green energy fund by levying a surcharge of 5 paise per unit on industrial and commercial consumers. It will be complimented by a support of `25 crore from the government. The resources available in the fund will be utilised to encourage rooftop grid connected solar project,’’ he said.

Murugesh R Nirani, minister for large and medium industries, said the state had proposed to install 200 MW solar power by 2015-16 for procurement by electricity supply companies (Escoms) to meet the renewable purchase obligation.

“Solar power projects of 80 MW capacity each for 2011-12 and 2012-13 have been awarded to successful bidders through competitive bidding. The Karnataka Power Corporation Limited (KPCL) had commissioned four solar power projects with aggregate capacity of 19 MWs. A 5MW solar power plant at Kaginele in Haveri district is yet to be installed,’’ the minister said.

The government has decided to establish solar parks in Bijapur, Gulbarga and Yadgir districts to provide plug-and-pay facility for speedy implementation of solar projects. “The cities of Mysore and Hubli-Dharwar are covered under model solar-city programmes and roof-top harvesting programmes are likely to be taken in these cities under net-metering concept,’’ he said.

Stating that the state leads in the installation of solar water-heating systems in the country, he said the Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Limited (KREDL) had identified 1,000 major buildings across the state for implementation of solar PV projects of capacity more than 100 KW. “About 100 major commercial institutions have been identified for steam-cooking systems,’’ he said.

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