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Central aid for 50 pico hydro projects in Kerala

According to reports, to promote hydroelectric power projects of 5 kW and below in Kerala, the Union ministry of new and renewable energy (MNRE) has announced a financial assistance to the tune of Rs 110,000 for setting up ‘Pico hydroelectric power projects’ in the state.

Hydroelectric power generation up to 5 kW is called pico hydro. This type of power generation can be useful in remote regions that are smaller in area, hence require less electricity. Pico-hydro set-ups do not require dams. Pipes are used to divert the flow down a gradient leading to a turbine and bring the water back to the stream.

The Energy Management Centre, Kerala, is the nodal agency for identifying potential investors for setting up the pico hydroelectric projects in the state. According to centre director Dharesan Unnithan, Idukki and Wayanad districts have been identified as highly potential areas for setting up the projects. The scheme can be implemented in other districts as well, except Alappuzha. Financial assistance would be given to 50 projects on a first-come-first-served basis.

The scheme is applicable to projects undertaken by individuals, government departments or local bodies, cooperatives and NGOs. Proposals for pico hydro electric power schemes owned by women, women entrepreneurs or NGOs run by women will be given preference.

To avail the grant, one should register with the Energy Management Centre (EMC) as per the application format provided on the EMC website ( The EMC will intimate the short-listed beneficiaries after scrutinizing the applications.

After getting registration and intimation from the EMC, the beneficiary may contact any reputed micro hydro turbine manufacturer from the list of MNRE or elsewhere, preferably from India, and implement the project directly with the help of any manufacturer preferred and selected by the beneficiary

. The pico hydro electric project should attain at least 50% overall efficiency to avail the central assistance.

A minimum contribution of 20% of the project cost should be met by the beneficiaries or project owners. The pico hydro electric projects installed in this CFA route should not be relocated or sold or transferred to another party.

The grand in aid will be provided to 50 eligible beneficiaries after successful completion of such schemes on or before October 31, 2013 on a first-come first-served basis.

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