Solar energy powers Tripura villages

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By OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT
  • Published 4.08.12
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Agartala, Aug. 3: Solar power is fast becoming a part of life in Tripura with the government going all out in using the alternative energy source to power interior and remote villages as well as parts of the state capital.

Altogether 45 remote villages in the hilly interiors of the state and 797 remote locations have been powered by solar energy during the past five years.

“Remoteness and hilly terrain had stood in the way of electrification of these villages and locations. So, we decided to provide solar power to these areas, inhabited mostly by indigenous people,” Tripura minister for science and technology Jaygobinda Debroy said.

Interacting with reporters in his official chamber in the state secretariat, Debroy said the state government was working on a perspective plan to expand generation and usage of alternative sources of power, including solar power.

“Every year we are generating 700 million units of alternative power, most of which is solar power. We also plan to increase the generation level from year to year,” the minister said.

He added that by the end of next year, altogether 100 solar power plants would be set up in as many schools of the state, mostly in rural and hilly areas, while in the current financial year, 1,000 portable biogas plants would be launched to create sources of alternative power.

“In addition to facilities being created by the state government, various other organisations are coming forward to set up solar power units in Tripura. Neepco, which is setting up a 100MW thermal power plant at Monarchak in Soknamura subdivision of West Tripura, is concurrently launching a solar power plant capable of generating 5MW of power,” Debroy said.

Apart from this, the state government has made considerable progress in making Agartala the first solar capital of the Northeast. Altogether 100 solar streetlights will be put up from Nagerjala bus stand on the southern outskirts of Agartala to Paradise square in the heart of the town. “During the past five years, the state government has distributed 32,000 solar lanterns among the people at a subsidised rate,” he said.

Regarding the state government’s plans to preserve ecological balance, the minister said the government had put forward a Rs 1,250-crore action plan for the same to the Union ministry of forest and environment, adding that the plan had been sanctioned.