Coimbatore Corporation under Mayor S.M. Velusamy and Commissioner G. Latha on Tuesday took yet another step towards tapping alternative energy. The civic body began tapping solar energy to power its East Zone office.

Mr. Velusamy in the presence of the Commissioner, Deputy Commissioner S. Sivarasu, Deputy Mayor Leelavathi Unni, City Engineer in-charge K. Sugumar, chairmen of various zones and councillors inaugurated the facility.

A press release from the Corporation said that it had installed 30 solar panels and other equipment with a capacity to generate 7.50 kw power. The energy generated would translate into 40 units a day and that would meet 40 per cent of the energy requirements of the zonal office.

The zonal office consumed 100 units a day. The installation would help the Corporation save Rs. 280 a day at Rs. 7 a unit. The annual savings amounted to Rs. 1,00,800.

But there could be further savings as the civic body would generate power on holidays but would not consume the same from the grid. It would claim concession for the power generated on such days. The release said that the civic body had fully funded the cost of installation. It would in the days to come apply to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy Resources to claim 30 per cent subsidy. The installation at the East Zone office was in keeping with the Tamil Nadu Government’s Solar Energy Policy, introduced in 2012 by the Chief Minister. The Policy mandated installation of rooftop solar power panels in all Government buildings.

The Corporation had installed the solar panels in its North Zone, Central Zone and West Zone offices. It was in the process of installing the panels in the South Zone and the main offices. It would soon start power generation at the zonal offices — each office has been fitted with 30 solar photovoltaic panels to generate 7.50kW power.

At the main office the number is slightly higher as the power requirement is higher.

Sources said that the Corporation had planned the installation of panels and other equipment at the zonal offices in such a way that it could increase the generation capacity by 7.50kW to increase the number of units produced. The Corporation would go in for more such solar projects. It would also encourage installation of solar panels by private establishments as Coimbatore was one of the solar mission cities, said Mr. Velusamy at the inauguration.

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