The master plan for the solar city project of the Kochi Corporation is ready.
Kochi is among the 60 cities selected by the Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy for the solar city initiative. A release issued by the local body said the master plan was prepared by the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI). Mayor Tony Chammany received the master plan from Sunandan Tiwari, Deputy Director of ICLEI, at New Delhi.
The Centre has earmarked Rs 50 lakh for the Kochi solar city project. ANERT (Agency for Non-conventional Energy and Rural Technology), the State nodal agency for the project, has sanctioned Rs 19.42 lakh out of the Rs 50 lakh to the corporation. The master plan will soon be presented before the corporation council.
The total indicative budget for developing Kochi as a solar city is estimated at Rs 696.59 crore. The funds will be invested over the five years of its implementation period. The total budget will be shared by the State government and the city authority, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, and private users.
Estimates in the master plan suggested that the energy consumption in Kochi by 2021 under the highest growth scenario is 975 million units (MU). This gives the city a 10 percent reduction goal of 97.5 MU.
Experts pointed out that a reduction through cumulating renewable energy and energy efficiency initiatives in the city render an aggregate reduction of 155.42 MU over five years.
Renewable energy interventions alone can achieve 93.64-MU reduction with a substantial contribution towards the overall reduction from industrial (33.25 per cent) and residential (29.36 per cent) sectors.
According to the master plan, savings in energy brought about by energy efficiency programmes is 63.04 MU over the same five year period with major contributions from initiatives undertaken in industrial (22.4 per cent) and residential (27.32 per cent) sectors. With targeted projects such as installation of solar water heaters and replacement of DG sets with photovoltaic systems, the city could potentially achieve the prescribed target well within five years, it said.