BHUBANESWAR: The first phase of the much awaited ‘floating solar power projects’ in the State is likely to be commissioned by March 2022.The power projects to be taken up as part of a joint venture under Ultra Mega Renewable Energy Power Parks (UMREPPs) Scheme of Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) will help the State in achieving the target of setting up 2200 MW solar and 550 MW non-solar renewable projects by 2022.
An estimated Rs 2500 crore will be invested for the projects. “The incubation period for conceiving each project would be around eight months including DPR preparation and award of work through EPC bidding with e-reverse auction process. Each of the projects would be completed within one and a half years,” said an Energy department official.
The present renewable energy installed capacity in the State is 362 MW solar and 77 MW non-solar. Gridco is further procuring 75 MW solar and 150 MW wind power from outside.
The State requires another 2000 MW solar capacity, including 1000 MW towards solar Renewable Purchase Obligation (RPO) and 1000 MW for non-solar RPO converted to solar, by end of this year to meet the RPO trajectory set by the MNRE.
Floating solar projects can be a game-changer in States like Odisha, where availability of large and contiguous patches of non-forest, non-agricultural, barren lands suitable for land based solar projects are limited.
The floating solar project has an inherent advantage of conservation of land and the related cost to acquire and maintain the site. Other advantages include, decrease of temperature related losses due to cooling effect and reduction of water evaporation.
“Installation of floating solar power plants over natural water resources will also reduce the evaporation loss thereby avoiding the loss of water. It will be helpful in providing food and energy security to the State,” said the officer.
A leading State PSU Green Energy Development Corporation of Odisha Ltd (GEDCOL) has collaborated with NHPC Limited to explore, plan and develop techno-commercially feasible floating solar power projects with an installed capacity of 500 MW in a phased manner in various reservoirs in the State. Energy Minister Dibya Shankar Mishra was present during the signing of agreement via video conferencing on Monday.