Draft master plan for Solar City in Kochi presented

: The draft master plan for a Solar City project in Kochi, with a financial outlay of Rs. 696.59 crore, was presented before various stakeholders on Monday.

The proposal drawn up by the All India Institute of Local Self Governance, New Delhi, has estimated that by 2021, Kochi city would need 975 million units (MU) of power per year.

The draft plan has proposed to reduce the dependence of conventional energy by 10 per cent in five years through renewable energy sources and energy efficiency initiatives. It was estimated that the city can achieve an “aggregate reduction of 155.42 MU” in five years.

It has also been assessed that the renewable energy interventions alone can achieve 93.64 MU of this with a substantial contribution towards the overall reduction from industrial (33.25 per cent) and residential (29.36 per cent) sectors.

The budget for the programme will be shared by the state government, city, Ministry for New and Renewal Energy and private users.

Solar cities are aimed at creating self-sustaining cities by leveraging the immense solar potential through renewable energy and several other energy efficiency projects in order to curb conventional energy demand by 10 per cent in the next five years.

A Solar City cell and a Solar City stakeholder committee will have to be set up for implementing the master plan, according to the draft document.

The suggestions made by various stakeholders will be incorporated in the draft plan and the revised document will be submitted to the Ministry for approval, said Ashish Verma, Manager (Energy and Climate) of the Institute.

Nodal agency

The city administrators have identified Agency for Non-Conventional Energy and Rural Technology, Thiruvananthapuram as the nodal agency for the implementation of the project, said Mayor Tony Chammany.

The revised document will be placed before the Corporation Council for approval, he said.

Some of the stakeholders suggested bringing in student clubs for spreading the message of energy conservation.