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Odisha government approves twin city rooftop solar project

According to reports, the state government has approved a proposal for installation of solar panel in roof top of all government establishments in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack area under PPP model and has directed the implementing  agency to sign agreements with International Finance Corporation (IFC).

“Government has been pleased to approve the proposal for implementation of solar rooftop project within twin cities of Cuttack and Bhubaneswar,” said Sangramjit Nayak, joint secretary in the state energy department to managing director of Odisha Hydro Power Corporation Ltd (OHPC) in a letter issued on Monday.

The OHPC should now take necessary steps to sign an agreement between Green Energy Development Corporation Ltd (GEDCOL) and IFC for project financing, he added.

GEDCOL, a recently established agency for development and maintenance of carbon-free energy in the state, is the wholly-owned subsidiary of OHPC.

The solar project is aimed at reducing ever-increasing power bills of government offices.The government has been criticised by the High Court for not clearing large amount of pending power bills in a tariff hike case.

In October last year, the state government decided to set up solar lighting systems on rooftop of all government offices from 2013-14 onwards. The project also mandates that solar heating system should be installed at all government-run hostels and guest houses to trim power bills.

In the first year of the implementation, the government has decided to use the office rooftops of government offices, agencies, directorates and state PSUs situated in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack, and later the scheme will be planned for other districts.

Last week, the government declared the newly floated company GEDCOL as the nodal agency for on-grid solar energy projects in the state whereas off-grid generation such as solar cooking, pumping, refrigeration, heating and industrial process will be Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA)’s responsibility .

GEDCOL’s mandate will be to plan, organise and implement projects and sell power anywhere in the country with special emphasis on on-grid generation. It will also conduct as well as facilitate technical soundness, pre-feasibility study and investigate renewable energy projects.

Currently the state generates 8 Mw solar energy by small producers and has plans to produce at least 80 Mw in next three years. It has the potential to generate nearly 10,000 MW solar energy, as per a study conducted by the state government.

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