Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal on Tuesday inaugurated a solar power plant spread over 42 acres on the Dera Baba Jaimal Singh (Radha Soami sect) premises here, which the government claimed was the world’s largest single rooftop facility. The plant has the capacity to produce 11.5MW electricity.
With this, the Rs 139-crore solar energy plant here has become country’s largest, with solar panels spread over 82 acres on eight rooftops of sheds and a capacity to generate 19.5 MW. The project will generate 27 million units of electricity per annum, enough to cater to the electricity needs of approximately 8,000 households.
Badal was accompanied by new and renewable energy resource minister Bikram Majithia.
A power purchase agreement (PPA) has been signed between the Dera and the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) for 25 years.
The first phase (7.5 MW) of this project was allotted in September 2013 and synchronised with the grid in April 2014. Later, the second phase (12 MW) was allotted in February 2015 and synchronised in December 2015.
In a statement after the inauguration, Badal lauded the Punjab Energy Development Agency (PEDA) for ushering in a solar-power revolution in the state.
Badal said the state-of-the-art project set up by the Radha Soami Satsang Beas Educational and Environmental Society (RSSBEES) in technical collaboration with PEDA will go a long way in motivating the other states to replicate such projects to generate clean and green energy.
Elaborating the environmental-friendly benefits, Majithia said the project will mean abating 4-lakh tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the next 25 years. Majithia said the Centre has set a target of generating 40,000 MW of renewable energy by 2022.
Punjab was producing only 9MW of renewable energy till February 2012, which has now gone up to 470MW and is expected to touch 1,080MW by year-end, he said.