Rooftop solar plants must for new home buildings in Haryana
GURUGRAM: The Haryana government has set an ambitious target of generating 1,600MW power through rooftop solar plants by 2021-22. The focus on rooftop solar power plants is part of the Haryana solar power policy released by the Manohar Lal Khattar government in March.
Last year, the government had made an announcement making it mandatory for houses built on plots of 500 square yards or more to install rooftop solar panels but the plan was a non-starter.
But the new policy has revived that proposal and mandated installation of solar power plants of 3-5% connected load for all residential buildings on plots of 500 square yards and more. Solar plants are also mandatory in all government and private educational institutes, universities and offices having connected load of 30KW and on top of all private hospitals, and industrial and commercial establishments having connected load of 50KW.
“The major focus of the policy is on rooftop solar power plants which will help the state to achieve the set target,” informed a senior official of HAREDA, Haryana’s department of renewable energy. The policy also specifies that in the residential category, only the new buildings will have to install solar power plants.
Commenting on the new policy, Shubhra Puri, solar power expert and founder of Gurgaon First, said, “The new policy is a better and bigger version of the earlier policy and the thrust is definitely on the rooftop solar power plants. In urban areas, while rooftop solar power plants are a good option, the focus in rural areas will be on bigger projects.” She said that while the changes in the policy were welcome, implementation was the key.
The department had earlier de-notified thermal solar water heaters, which had been mandatory for the last 10 years. According to the sources at HAREDA, this was done as simultaneously both photovoltaic (PV) power plants and thermal solar water heaters cannot be accommodated on rooftops and PV solar power plants are much more beneficial to individual consumers as well as the state government.
The PV solar power plants will be grid-connected and the energy generated from such systems will be cumulatively adjusted at 90% of the electricity consumption during the financial year and an incentive of 25 paise per unit will also be provided to the consumer.
“The influence of the builders’ lobby is evident from the abrupt withdrawal of the rule on thermal water heaters. Now, they will go for cheap electronic heaters, which will not only be expensive but will also consume power thereby impacting the environment negatively,” said Hardeep Darshan, an activist.