Coimbatore residents take to solar energy to deal with power shortage
Residents of Coimbatore are finding the use of solar energy extremely beneficial after experiencing consistent and acute power shortage in the area.
According to media reports, nanotechnology has the potential to make solar energy affordable and cost-effective at the same time.
Coimbatore is well-known for its windmills, but it has now made its foray in the realm of solar energy.
A one MW solar plant has been set up in Coimbatore and the energy generated is supplied to the grid.
Sreedhar, a house owner, said the people are waiting for subsidies from the government to install plants in their homes.
"Many people come every year to ask about the plants; today about 500 people came to look at the plant. Out of these, only 10 people would have put the plant, but otherwise, the people are waiting for the subsidies from the government to install the plant. The state or the central government should take appropriate steps to reduce the restrictions and give some subsidies for the on-going power crisis to be tackled," he said.
Solar plants can be established anywhere in the state, especially on rooftops where solar panels are installed.
In the future, it is said that nano-materials may be used to transform heat generated from various equipment.
India, growing at around 5-6 percent per year, needs all the help it can get to ease the strain on its power sector, where supply already falls 11-12 percent short of demand during peak hours.
The world's fourth-largest crude importer also wants to cut dependency on costly oil and reduce the use of coal, where its huge reserves face production problems forcing it to supplement from outside. Solar can help cut use of diesel and kerosene -- both heavily subsidised by the financially-strapped state.
India installed 300 MW of solar capacity in 2011, accounting for just 1 percent of the 29.5 gigawatts (GW) of new such plants in the period. Outside Europe, which accounts for 75 percent of the market, China installed the most last year with 2.2 GW.
India's USD 70 billion solar plans mirrors China's, with both aiming for solar capacity of 20 GW by 2020, although Beijing is expected to up that to 21 GW by 2015.