Under the MoU, EESL and DNRE will carry-out the feasibility studies and subsequent implementation of decentralized solar energy projects. EESL – through its newly formed 100 per cent owned subsidiary, Convergence Energy Services – will install 100 MW of decentralized ground mounted solar power projects on government lands to be used for agricultural pumping, replace approximately 6,300 BEE star rated agricultural pumps and distribute approximately 16 lakh LED bulbs for rural domestic households.
Speaking on the occasion, Union Minister for Power and New and Renewable Energy (IC) R K Singh said, “The energy sector and the electricity sector in particular are transitioning in an unprecedented way. With this programme, Goa can avail 3 major benefits through reduced burden of subsidy, increased efficiency of products reducing power consumption and reduced burden on the environment. With this initiative, along with the Kusum Scheme, Goa is well on path of becoming a green state. I congratulate EESL for this innovative business model and hope that other states too come forward to adopt it.”
Nilesh Cabral, Power Minister, Goa, said, “Goa is the first state to adopt the concept of amortizing the cost of pumps and LEDs into a PPA. This approach saves us INR 2,574 crores to the State over a period of 25 years, while improving the health of DISCOMs and providing cleaner power at the same time. This project will provide clean day time electricity to farmers and energy efficient pump sets that would reduce the power consumption as well as T&D losses associated with transmitting power to agriculture and rural feeder networks.”
The projects will accelerate the usage of renewable energy, especially for agricultural and rural power consumption in the State. The projects will also contribute in reducing peak energy demand through deployment of energy efficient pumping and lighting.
Convergence will install solar projects in a first of its kind large scale programme where vacant/unused land provided by the Gram Panchayats/electricity board will be utilized. Plants of 500kW to 2MW in size will be installed near the substations and enable DISCOMs to supply power during the day time and reduce transmission losses.
Speaking on the occasion, Sanjiv Nandan Sahai, Secretary, Ministry of Power, said, “We believe that now that solar power has become affordable, implementing projects such as these can become a powerful means to eventually solarize our villages. Decentralized models of power development are becoming more and more important, and approaches such as the one one being taken hold great promise to allow India to achieve her development goals. “
Convergence builds upon the decentralised solar development experience in under-served rural communities in India, and over time, using battery energy storage, will deliver renewable energy solutions to power agricultural pumps, street lighting, domestic lighting and cooking appliances in villages. Convergence will also work to enable battery powered electric mobility and its infrastructure and design business models to increase the uptake of electric vehicles in India. To enable commercialization of these solutions at scale, Convergence will employ business models that utilize a blend of concessionary and commercial capital, carbon finance and grants as appropriate.