According to reports, tapping the enormous potential of solar energy by setting up solar power units on the roof-tops of residences as well as public institutions is the only way out to salvage the State from its present power crisis, energy expert and former president of the Kerala Sastra Sahithya Parishad (KSSP) R.V.G. Menon has said.
He was talking at a seminar on the ‘the alternative energy sources,’ organised as part of the golden jubilee celebrations of the Parishad at the Town hall here on Friday.
He threw light on the historical reasons on why the country lagged behind other nations in developing alternative energy sources, especially by tapping solar and wind energy sources.
He said that given the peculiar circumstances arising from the limited prospects of fossil fuels, all the states should expedite their process of switching over from the conventional energy sources to the renewable ones.
Mr. Menon said that though many developed countries including the U.S. and Germany were witnessing over 100 per cent growth in solar energy sector, India was very slow in adapting the new technology.
“Only states like Rajasthan and Gujarat are showing some encouraging signs,” he said. Stating that the effort by the State government to set up as many as 10,000 roof-top solar panels across the State at a subsidised rate was a welcome move, Mr. Menon said that the response from the residents however was not so positive.
“Only around 7,000 people have registered for the unit so far,” he said.
He also said that the State would be able to produce over 30,000 MW power if its current potential was utilised effectively by installing the domestic as well as large-scale solar panels in different parts of the State.
“We can also think about setting up floating solar panels in large scale at different reservoirs in the State,” he said.
After different subsidies, the roof-top solar panel power unit costs only around Rs. 1 lakh for a resident. If an effective storage technology is developed, its cost, according to him, could be further reduced considerably. “But what we need more importantly is an attitudinal change towards using novel energy sources,” he said.
Organising committee convener E. Abdul Hameed welcomed the gathering. Committee member M. Rajan presided over the function. Cultural programmes by the ‘Parishad Kala Troup’ were also conducted at the venue after the seminar.