Bhubaneswar: With the constant demand for electricity in the city rising with increasing urbanisation, experts here, Monday, mooted how alternative sources of energy such as solar power could be harnessed to reduce burden on conventional methods.
In a meeting of Smart City Advisory Forum (SCAF), at Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA) premises, Social Security and Empowerment of Persons with Disability (SSEPD) Minister Ashok Chandra Panda suggested inclusion of rooftop solar plants in order to trap the unconventional energy sources to the maximum.
“Bhubaneswar has huge potential of solar energy that still remains underutilized. Hopefully Bhubaneswar Smart City Limited (BSCL) would act in this direction. As per its proposal, solar power harvesting is also an important part of the convergence projects under the Smart City Proposal,” Panda said.
In an earlier study done by the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) and the central government in 2016, a nine-year data revealed the city’s consumption lie 721.93 Mega Unit (MU) consumption of electricity; 30199 Metric Tonne on LPG; 46248 Kilo Litres (kL) on petrol; 56669 kl on diesel and 9305 kl on kerosene. These numbers are expected to increase given the rising population in the city.
The study also explained that the consumption of electricity in the city was 47% by commercial; 41% by domestic; 11% by industrial and 1% by domestic. Moreover, the projected demand of electricity in the capital city by 2022 would be 1130.828 Million kWh.
However, the city which receives good amount of solar radiation with an annual average of 4.76 kWh per metre square per day had very few harnessing the energy with only 5100 solar roof tops; 87 Solar water heaters and just 7 solar steam cooking, a total use of only 1,39,535 kWh solar energy, the study suggested.
Taking in cognizance the potential of solar energy, Chief Executive Officer of BSCL Prem Chandra Chaudary, who is also the Commissioner Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) and vice-chairman of BDA said, “The suggestions of the forum would be discussed further through proper channel and in future could be included in the smart city work. A detailed plan will be made for harnessing and better use of the energy.”
The forum also discussed topics like development of Mali Sahi near Neelachal Hospital within the ABD area, Smart Janpath, traffic management and especially illegal parking in lanes and by-lanes. Discussions on plantation of more trees to provide shade for pedestrians and cyclists, optical fibre laying by the BSCL and how the city will be benefitted from it in future, were other points discussed during the meet.