Sangeetha Unnithan

Project to be taken up under total energy security mission

Council approves organising panel

for the mission

Energy auditing to be made mandatory

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The city Corporation has launched a project to prepare an integrated energy master plan for the State capital, with proposals to tap and promote the use of non-conventional energy sources.

The project will be taken up under the Sampoorna Oorja Suraksha Mission, a State-level initiative aimed at achieving total energy security. The mission, which was launched in Thiruvananthpuram district panchayat in 2007, focuses on total electrification, energy conservation and tapping of renewable sources to meet the growing energy demands of the city.

The Corporation council has approved an organising committee for the mission. An amount of Rs.35 lakh has been earmarked for the project in the People’s Plan Campaign for the year 2009-10.

The two-year programme, to be implemented in association with the Agency for Non-Conventional Energy and Rural Technology (ANERT) and the Energy Management Centre (EMC), will begin with a sample survey of energy end use consumption pattern. The sample survey will be conducted among 10 per cent of consumers in the Corporation area.

This will be followed by GIS mapping of power line networks in the city. The first phase of the mission programmes also include IEC (Information Education Communication) programmes for creating awareness among consumers regarding optimum usage of electricity and energy conservation efforts.

Based on the energy reports devolved from the surveys conducted in the first phase, the Corporation will develop an integrated energy master plan. Projects will be evolved to tap and promote non-conventional sources of energy, like solar energy and biomass gasifiers, in the second year.

Mandatory energy auditing in public institutions and small and medium scale business establishments is another significant component of the mission. The State government scheme to distribute free CFL lamps to every BPL (Below Poverty Line) and SC/ST families will also be integrated into the mission programme. “The basic objective of the mission is to achieve, at an affordable cost, a power consumption of a minimum of one unit electricity a household a day and an energy equivalent of 10 LPG cylinders a household a year by the year 2012. The mission was launched in the State in selected local bodies in 2007 as per the guidelines of the State Planning Board,” said ANERT project director R. Harikumar.

Although the primary responsibly of implementing projects under the mission is vested with the local bodies, they are often unable to do this because of lack of expertise or absence of coordination with other energy management agencies, Mr. Harikumar said. The mission has already been launched in 446 grama panchayats in the State.

“In panchayats, the mission focuses on electrification of remote areas and tapping locally-available renewable sources of energy like micro and mini hydro electric projects and biogas plants. In municipalities, the focus is on urban street lighting,” said mission district coordinator Ramachandran Nair. He said that ANERT had already identified around 49 sites for small hydro electric projects in the district panchayat.