Agriculture News
02 September 2014

Farmers can now generate, sell solar power to government

Written by Jayant Chaudhary

Energy Minister D K Shivakumar on Monday announced a new scheme, called ‘Surya Raita’, under which farmers will be encouraged to generate solar energy and sell power to the government at a profitable rate. A farmer having a 10 kV solar power facility can earn up to Rs 50,000 a year by selling excess power to the government. It is after using power for her/his own use. About Rs one lakh needs to be invested to instal one kV of solar power. A dedicated feeder will be installed for this purpose. A government order on launching the scheme will be issued in a day or two, he told reporters. Farmers wishing to use solar power for Irrigation Pump (IP) sets are entitled to subsidy under various schemes of the State and the Central governments.

The State Energy department, for instance, offers 90 per cent subsidy and the Agriculture department 50 per cent subsidy. In the first phase, the government has set a target of bringing at least 3,000 IP set farmers in Karnataka under this scheme in the current financial year, the minister added. Farmers’ solar power facility will be connected to the grid. These grid-connected solar power-generating units will be provided with net metering facility to keep a record of power supplied to the grid. The government will pay Rs 9.56 per unit of solar power (generated without obtaining the subsidy) and Rs 7.20 per unit (if any government subsidy is obtained), Shivakumar explained.

News Source : Deccan Herald - Bangalore, 2 September 2014