According to reports, power generation from alternative sources in the district gained momentum with the start of environment friendly, biomass-based power production in the district. It achieves greater significance as traditional thermal power generation has proved to be expensive and a major contributor to global warming.
Circars Power Industries Limited, was given permission to start biomass-based power with a capacity of 6MW at Narsingapally way back in 1999, but did not start generating power until 2010.
Sources say that such projects were cleared in all districts by the state government as part of an initiative to encouraging green power projects across the state.
Vishnu Vidyut India Limited took over the project in 2010 and started production in Jan 2013. It is the first unit to be upgraded to 7.5MW and produces power with locally available agricultural waste. The electricity generated through the combustion of renewable biomass is being sent to the AP Transmission Corporation’s grid at Narasingapally.
“We are selling power at Rs 5.45 per unit, which is synchronised to the grid. The advantage is that the technology for power generation using biomass is similar to that of a thermal plant based on coal but at a cheaper cost with low emissions,” said Grandhi Suresh Babu, Managing Director of the unit.
Currently, biomass contributes 14 per cent of the total energy supply, predominantly in the rural and traditional sectors. A study conducted by a researcher of Bharathiar University also showed that the unit cost of electricity from electricity board is Rs 4.017 while that from biomass works to only Rs 1.395, which is affordable.
“We are encouraging such green projects in the district in order to enhance power production to bail out from the crisis. Many organizations are coming forward to set up solar units in urban areas,” said Nedcap district manager P. V. Ramaraju.