According to reports, at least five companies including Tata Power and engineering major L&T have shown interest to develop rooftop solar power project in Odisha, according to official sources.
The companies have enquired about the the request for qualification (RFQ) tender floated by Green Energy Development Company Ltd (Gedcol), the nodal agency of the state government to develop on grid solar power in the state.
“About 4-5 companies have come, including Tata Power and L&T to discuss about the project details. We have not received any written communication from them so far,” said a senior official of Gedcol.
The rooftop solar energy project would cost around Rs 50 crore for installing equipment to generate 5 Mw power. The Gedcol will be providing the money from loan assistance financed by International Finance Corporation (IFC).
The last date for applying to the RFQ proposal of the state undertaking is April 29. The interested bidders would be responsible for operation and maintenance of the project, which will be installed ‘on buildings to be specified by Govt of Odisha in the cities of Bhubaneswar and Cuttack’, the RFQ paper said. 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 2012, it was decided to set up solar lighting systems on rooftop of all government establishments, including offices, agencies, directorates and state PSUs situated in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack, in order to trim power bills. Later the scheme would be expanded to other districts.
To tap the potential of solar energy production, the state government has formulated Odisha Solar Policy 2013, in line with National Solar Mission, to facilitate solar power projects inside the state.
As per data provided by National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), almost all districts of Odisha receive an average solar radiation of 5.5 kWh/ Sqm area with around 300 sunny days every year. The feasible potential for power generation in the solar photovoltaic route has been roughly estimated as 8000 Mw.