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Sun shines bright on Bhiwandi school, brings electricity bill to zero

With 94 panels the system generates between 90 and 120 units depending upon the amount of sunlight it receives

mumbai Updated: Aug 20, 2018 09:51 IST
Badri Chatterjee
Badri Chatterjee
Hindustan Times
Solar power,Mumbai solar power,Solar Panel
Managed by Shree Bhairav Seva Samiti, Bhiwandi, the school teaches 202 students across 20 classrooms (from nursery to class 10) with speech and hearing impairment free of charge.

A school in Thane district has managed to cut its electricity bill to zero from ₹40,000 per month after installing a 30 kilowatt-power (kWp) rooftop solar system.

Electricity consumption across the three-acre Shree Nakoda Karna Badhir Vidyalaya, near village Saravali in Bhiwandi is powered by solar panels, allowing the school to become a zero-energy consumer. Lights, fans, and computers at the school are all powered using renewable energy.

Managed by Shree Bhairav Seva Samiti, Bhiwandi, the school teaches 202 students across 20 classrooms (from nursery to class 10) with speech and hearing impairment free of charge. “The installation of the system was funded by two private companies that helped us and our students understand the importance of adopting green energy. Apart from being cost-effective, the system can also help mitigate carbon emissions,” said Surendra Jain Gogad, trustee of the school.

With 94 panels the system generates between 90 and 120 units depending upon the amount of sunlight it receives. According to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), a 30 kWp system helps mitigate 923 tons of carbon dioxide through its lifetime and is equivalent to planting 1,476 teak trees.

“There was a sudden drop in our electricity bill within a month, and within two months, it was zero. We were only paying the basic charges to electricity distributor. This surprised our students so much that they began convincing their parents to adopt different forms of renewable energy. A lot of parents have been enquiring about such measures since then,” said Pushpat Jain, school chairman.

Installed in April this year, the system was inaugurated on July 5. The cost of the solar plant was about ₹16.5 lakh, which the school expects to recover over the next three years.

HT had last month reported that of the 1,095 megawatt (MW) rooftop solar capacity in India, Maharashtra leads with the maximum number of installations and capacity at 145.09MW, according to data from the MNRE. The data also showed that 60% of the installations are from the Mumbai Metropolitan Region, Pune, Nagpur, Nasik, Aurangabad, and the remaining from various rural areas across the state.

“This is probably the only school along the Thane-Kalyan route to have adopted solar energy. They have registered all details of the plant with us. They set an example for other schools to take one step towards a green future,” said a senior official from the Thane district administration.

First Published: Aug 19, 2018 23:55 IST