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Karnataka tops in harnessing power from small hydro projects

According to reports, Karnataka today tops in harnessing power from small hydro projects and co-generation plants from sugar factories in the country.

The state produces 4,332 Mw from renewable sources with wind energy contributing the highest proportion of 53 per cent while sugar factories contribute 17 per cent.

The all India figure stands at 25,845 Mw including that of Karnataka, said Karnataka Renewabale Energy Development Ltd (KREDL) Project Engineer D K Dinesh Kumar today.

Addressing an interactive session on energy conservation, renewable energy and domestic gas organised by the Mysore Chamber of Commerce & Industry (MCCI), in association with the KREDL here, he said the Karnataka Electricty Regulatory Commission had recommended Rs 7.20 per unit to those who give back solar energy to the grid.

Individuals and private parties can set up solar plants up to 5 Kw and wheel back excess solar power to the grid after meeting their own requirements.

After the state cabinet’s approval, it would be effected by the Chamundeswari Electricity Supply Company (CESC) and other service providers.

The peak hour load between 7 am and 8 am in the mornings and in the evenings when power consumption was the highest was imposing a heavy pressure on the electricity supply companies, resulting in power cuts.

Every year, consumption was rising during these peak hours, and last year the increase was 1,200 Mw, he said, urging for the need to switch over to solar power by consumers as solar power can be used for varied purposes including cooking.

Hence, installation of solar power units had been made mandatory for all constructions on plots that are 30’x40′ or bigger across the state.

About 1,800 Mw power can be saved in Karnataka through renewable energy sources.

The latest technologies, he said, would help increase generation of more wind powder and it cost Rs 10-12 crore per machine.

Meanwhile, explaining the various renewable energy opportunities, he said subsidy offered by the state and Centre ranged between 30 per cent and 75 per cent, depending upon the projects being taken up.

All the 601 ‘Nemmadi Kendras’ (public service centres) were connected with solar power and 166 of them were in Mysore region alone.

A number of institutions in the state had taken to solar power generation for their own use like mass cooking, he said calling on power consumers to take advantage of the schemes promoted by the KREDL and help the state mitigate the power shortage.

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