Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) plans to set up multi-purpose hybrid street lights, powered by renewable energy. The mechanism was proposed by a private company specialising in renewable energy related products.
A single unit of these lights can accommodate surveillance cameras and public address system. The pole of these street lights called RENLYS can harness both wind and solar energy and do not require solar panels as the pole will act as solar panel.
“These poles will tap solar energy and store the excess power in batteries or supply it back to the grid,” said BMC Commissioner Sanjib Mishra.
Earlier, BMC had approved another proposal in collaboration with Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA) to set up solar powered street lights in two stretches in the city: from OUAT Square to Delta Square and AG Square to Acharya Vihar.
The OREDA proposal assured 30 per cent energy efficiency and a break even in the investment after 30 years. But BMC faced difficulty in getting 600 square metres of land adjacent to the road for setting up the solar panels, said Mishra.
In the present proposal, the company has assured a break even in the investment only one year after establishment of the street lights. There is also no need to acquire land for solar panels. Since these lights can accommodate surveillance cameras, they will be useful for the Traffic Department too.
The cost of covering one-kilometre stretch with the hybrid street lights is estimated to be ` 1.6 crore. “Cost of construction will be high, but maintenance cost and electricity charges will not be high as the company has assured us a guarantee of 30 years,” said Mishra.
Presently, BMC spends around ` six crore on maintenance and around ` nine crore towards electricity bill of street lights every year.