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Now, Bescom to harness solar energy for irrigation pump sets

Though there are close to nine lakh IP sets within the Bescom jurisdiction, hardly a few of them have been solarised under various government schemes
Last Updated : 26 March 2023, 23:57 IST
Last Updated : 26 March 2023, 23:57 IST
Last Updated : 26 March 2023, 23:57 IST
Last Updated : 26 March 2023, 23:57 IST

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In a big push towards the use of clean energy, Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (Bescom) will soon harness solar power to energise close to 2.6 lakh irrigation pump sets (IP sets) across the state. While this will ensure an uninterrupted power supply to the farmers, it will also bring down the electricity supply company’s dependence on conventional sources of power.

The project is being taken up under the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan (PM–KUSUM) scheme. Agencies will be selected to set up grid-connected distributed solar power plants at the substation level in Bescom jurisdiction.

“We have done a feasibility study and identified the areas where the project can be implemented. The agency will have to search suitable locations within the three-km radius of our substation and set up solar plants,” a senior Bescom official explained.

Once the plants are commissioned, the generators can get a 30% subsidy from the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE). “We have assessed the requirement across these areas over the last two years and we expect that solar plants will produce at least 1,086 MW of energy to meet the demands of the farmers,” another official
said.

In total, IP sets consume close to 24% of the energy sold by Bescom annually.

While the project will ensure supply of quality power to IP sets, it will also bring down the financial burden on the energy department by reducing the subsidy to power the IP sets.

Though there are close to nine lakh IP sets within the Bescom jurisdiction, hardly a few of them have been solarised under various government schemes.

“From Surya Raitha to PM KUSUM Component A, there are a few schemes that the farmers can apply to. However, many of them are standalone projects and their implementation on the ground is low. At present, across the state, less than 10,000 IP sets run on solar power,” a Bescom officials said.

Though the Central government floated the proposal to provide solar power to agricultural pump sets in 2019 and the MNRE issued the guidelines in 2020, Bescom, one of the nodal agencies in the state, was yet to implement the programme on the ground owing to technical obstacles.

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Published 26 March 2023, 17:03 IST

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