Mansa is shining under Sun as with 64 MW installed capacities of solar power; the district has emerged as the torch bearer on solar energy front in the state. Besides this, the world renowned company Moserbaer has also taken 150 acres of land on lease here for setting up a 34 MW Solar power project.
In a simple but in an impressive function held here today, the Punjab New & Renewable Energy Minister Mr. Bikram Singh Majithia along with Balwinder Singh Bhunder, MP, inaugurated two solar power projects of 2.10 MW and 1 MW set up by M/s. Alianz Eco Power Limited and M/s Nextgen Solux Power Private Limited at the cost of Rs. 15.50 crore and Rs. 8.00 crore respectively. Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Majithia said that the humble beginning started three years ago in renewable energy sector has now becomes a movement as the solar power generation has now touched 215 MW from just 9 MW with an investment of more than Rs. 1500 crore . 23 ground mounted solar projects of 229 MW capacity (Rs. 1600 Crore) and 4 solar roof top projects of 65 MW ( Rs. 300 crore) are under implementation.
Majithia pointed out that Mansa has emerged as number 1 district of the state on solar power front as four such projects having joint power generation capacity of 61 MW had been running successfully.Mr. Majithia said that the path breaking initiatives of Punjab on RE front have not gone unnoticed as the Prime Minister has awarded Punjab as best performing state on RE front during REINVEST-2015 held in New Delhi and few days ago Renewable Energy Promotion Association (REPA) has awarded Punjab as the Best Bio-energy State of India with highest installed capacity of rural agro waste based – biomass energy conversion projects. Punjab has 62.5 MW capacities in biomass power generation.Describing clean energy the need of hour, Mr. Majithia said that the state was taking the concept of clean and green living to every house by encouraging people to produce their own power through roof top projects and a unique Net Metering Policy 2014 has been notified. With concerted efforts of state government the IDBI bank has launched a new scheme “Surya Shakti” for financing such projects. Mr. Majithia said that it was high time for financial institutions to come forward with liberal credit policies required for RE projects so that our environment could be saved for our future generations.
Mr. Majithia said that under the dynamic leadership of Chief Minisiter Mr. Parkash Singh Badal and Deputy Chief Minister Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal even the Mansa and Bathinda districts have been attracting huge investments which were considered backward areas few years ago. He said that keen interest of state farmers in solar power could be gauged from the fact that PEDA has recently got Expressions of Interest for 1200 MW against the initial estimates of 500 MW. He said that now two bids of 500 MW each for farmers and renowned companies are being floated and he was confident that these initiatives would change the future power scenario and solar power would become cheaper than thermal power. He said that the state farmers were now getting remunerative lease rates besides high rates even for non-fertile lands. He said that our government was also emphasizing on biomass energy with dual aim of enhancing the farmers’ income from agri-waste on one hand and saving the environment on the other thereby promoting clean and green energy in the state.He also welcomed the NRIs for opting for solar power and informed that till date NRIs have invested Rs. 245 crore in five projects having joint power generation capacity of 45 MW. He said that number of other such projects by NRIs were under different stages of implementation.
Earlier, speaking on the occasion, Mr. Balwinder Singh Bhunder, Member Parliament, congratulated Mr. Majithia for bringing Mansa as the most happening district on solar power front in the country. He assured the Minister about full cooperation to the solar power developers. He also urged the farmers to come forward and opt for State government’s upcoming Farmers’ solar power projects policy to enhance their earnings on one hand and contribute in clean energy drive on the other. Mr. Yashpreet Singh Brar (M/s Nextgen Solux Power) said that the positive approach of the Punjab Government & the support of the Punjab Energy Development Agency have boosted their confidence and he alongwith his partner NRI Kanwaljit Singh Mangat would soon invest more in this sector. Representing NRI Jaspal Deol ( M/s Alianz Eco Power) in the function, Mr. Surinder Singh Sandhu, Director also shared his experience of setting up this project and cooperation extended by state government in timely execution of the project. Prominent amongst others who were present on the occasion included Mr. Prem Mittal, MLA, Mr. Jagdeep Singh Nakai, former CPS and Dr. Amarpal Singh, CEO, PEDA.