Govt. schools in city to shift to solar power

All government schools in the city could make considerable savings in their power bills, with the Thiruvananthapuram city Corporation’s plan to install solar power plants in all of them.

The move is part of the Corporation’s earlier declaration of intent to turn all the government buildings in the city into solar-powered ones. The initial discussions on this with the Kerala State Electricity Board (KSEB) and other stakeholders have begun.

Mayor Arya Rajendran told The Hindu that the Corporation planned to start off the project with a pilot run in one of the government schools.

Pilot project

“In this year’s Budget, the Corporation had promised to install solar power plants in all government buildings. This includes all the government schools that come under the Corporation. Since the initial cost is high, we will begin with a pilot project in one of the schools so that we can see the results before it is replicated elsewhere. Since schools are set to reopen by November, we are planning to start the pilot project before that,” said the Mayor.

In the discussions with the KSEB officials, they had put forward different models of implementation. The Corporation is likely to go for a model where it gives space for the plant in various schools and the KSEB would do the initial investments, providing 10% of the power production to the Corporation. The civic body has also formed a team to identify spaces in schools for setting up the solar panels and to check the feasibility in each school.

Subsidies to individuals

The Corporation will also be using its plan funds to provide subsidies to individual consumers wanting to shift to solar power. The installation of solar power plant at the legislative Assembly complex, under the Corporation’s Smart City project, was completed last month. In addition, solar panels were installed at the Government College for Women at Vazhuthacaud, the Public Library and the Kerala University Library at Palayam, and the Government Central High School at Attakulangara.

Officials estimate the annual savings in power bills in the five buildings would come to around ₹50 lakh, with a considerable reduction in carbon footprint too. In the next phase, power plants are set to be installed in the MLA hostel and a few other government buildings.

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