The world is rooting for some sort of remedy that will put all of us out of our misery – the one that we created with pollution, contamination and adulteration over the years. That said, even though we do not have a full-fledged solution just yet, one Indian city has gotten it all right.
Taking a giant stride in the solar power sector, Diu has become India’s first city to have a surplus of renewable energy in just three years.
It might surprise you, but Diu now runs 100% on solar energy. In a span of three years, Diu has made rapid progress in solar power generation. Limited to a geographical area of just 42 sq km, Diu has become the first Union territory where more than 100% of the electricity need is being met by solar power. In spite of the scarcity of land, solar power plants have been installed in over 50 acres of land.
Diu generates a total of 13 megawatts of electricity from solar power-generating facilities. Around 3MW is generated by rooftop solar plants and 10MW by its other solar power plants.
Prior to solar power generation three years ago, people of Diu were consuming electricity supplied from power grid owned by the Gujarat government, which had a huge line loss. Once the local power company started generating electricity from solar energy, electric loss of the Union territory got reduced significantly.
Daman and Diu electricity department’s executive engineer Milind Ingle told TOI, “Population of Diu is 56,000 only. For water and electricity, the Union territory was solely dependent on the Gujarat government. To overcome this limitation, the administration of the Union territory decided to set up solar power plants in Diu.”
Ingle said, “Diu’s peak time demand for electricity goes up to 7MW and we generate about 10.5MW of electricity from solar energy daily. This is way more than the consumption demand requirement.”
He said solar power has come as a big relief for local residents as their monthly charges have seen a reduction of around 12%. Previously, 0-50 unit charge was Rs 1.20 per unit, 50-100 unit charge was Rs 1.50 per unit. But now since electricity is generated from solar power plants in Diu, the Joint Electricity Regulatory Commission for the state of Goa and Union territories removed 0-50 unit slab. Now they have revised the 1-100 unit charge at Rs 1.01 per unit.
By Shewali Tiwari