Sunderbans villages to get grid-connected solar power
May 7, 2010 Leave a comment
The West Bengal Green Energy Development Corporation (WBGEDC), the state government’s nodal agency for alternative sources of energy, is set to provide grid-connected electricity in the far flung island villages of Sunderbans.
The corporation has planned to supply power to as many as 40 villages in the Sunderbans, covering a population of about two lakh.
The villages identified under this initiative are located in three blocks namely Gosaba, Namkhana and Parthapratima of the Sunderban Delta.
The project will be undertaken under the Rajiv Gandhi Gramin Vidyutikaran Yojna and is likely to cost Rs 130 crore. “We are starting with 10 per cent of the villages. It will be supplied on a built operate transfer (BOT) model where private companies will distribute power much like it is in the case of CESC for Kolkata,” said S P Gon Chaudhuri, Managing Director, WBGEDC.
According to him, a number of companies have shown interest in the project.
The Sunderbans villages got electricity from solar power for the first time in the late nineties when solar panels that provided power to a couple of lamps were installed there. But due to several disadvantages of those panels — many electrical equipment couldn’t be powered by them — they were finally discarded. It is also difficult to supply power to these 1,064 villages through electric poles because of large stretch of water between them.
This time, the technology will be a combination of solar photo voltaic cell and bio diesel. “This hybrid technology will have an intelligent controller, which can switch to use solar photo voltaic power during the day and power generated from bio fuel in the night. Thus the system can provide power round the clock to the villages,” said Gon Chaudhuri.
The project is in its final stages and work on it will start from July this year, he added.