With the Cabinet giving approval for the solar energy policy to be incorporated with the construction of new buildings, solar panels with government subsidy will be installed in 25,000 more new houses in the next financial year.
Agency for Non-Conventional Energy and Rural Technology (Anert) has already introduced rooftop solar power plant programme, which is nearing completion. The draft solar energy policy, which got Cabinet nod on Wednesday, was incorporated with some of the recommendations received from the stakeholders and the public.
Anert director Jayaraju said it was proposed to install 10,000 rooftop solar panels and half of them has been completed. The rest would be completed this financial year and it will provide 1 KW of solar energy.
“Around half the amount required for the rooftop installations are given to the customers as subsidy. As the government approved the solar energy policy, Anert would go for installation of another 25,000 solar panels soon,” Jayaraju said.
He pointed out that the cost of producing 1 KW of solar energy comes to around `2 lakh. Of this, `92,262 will be provided as subsidy from the Union and State governments.
According to the solar policy of the government, the capacity of the solar sector will be increased to 500 MW by 2017 and 1,500 MW by 2030. If the initiative of Anert to provide solar energy to 25,000 more houses materialise, then the state will be far ahead in ensuring energy and ecological security.
According to Jayaraju, as per the new policy it is not mandatory to install solar energy equipment at existing buildings and those under construction. However, if the buildings could utilise solar power for its energy needs, the power-starved Kerala would be benefited much in the long run. The government is yet to come out with the rules and regulations for the certifications for solar-powered buildings. Use of solar power and solar water heater will be made mandatory for residential flats, buildings with floor area of more than 2,000 sq ft.
It also proposed to give licence to the manufacturers who install photovoltaic systems in the state. All commercial consumers with more than 20KVA of connected load should have solar procurement obligation.
The solar energy policy will be extended to other industrial consumers in a phased manner. The policy is to mandate 100 litres solar water heater and 500 W solar photovoltaic systems for domestic building with floor area of between 2,000 sq ft to 3,000 sq ft.
All buildings above 3,000 sq ft will have to install a 100-litre solar water heater and at least 1,000 W solar photovoltaic system. In case of residential flats and apartments, 5 per cent of the energy usage for common amenities should be from solar power