JK non-performer in renewable energy: Report

Kashmiris Are ‘Biggest Thieves’: Farooq Abdullah


New Delhi, Mar 1: Even as the renewable energy sector in other states has progressed, Jammu and Kashmir comes as a laggard in utilizing its huge potential in wind, solar, biomass and small hydro-power projects (SHP), reveals a report by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE).
Dr Farooq Abdullah, minister for new and renewable energy released at New Delhi the report titled: “Citizen’s report on state of renewable energy.”
The report takes stock of the current status of renewable energy in India as well as the issues that plague the sector.
Abdullah while commenting on dismal scenario of energy sector in Jammu and Kashmir said, “Kashmiri chor nahi mahachor hai” (Kashmiris are biggest thieves), triggering laughter among the audience.
“They use illegal electricity connections and bribe the local linemen,” he said, terming it as the “main problem” plaguing the state’s electricity department. According to the report, among the cash starved state power utilities and electricity departments all over India, Jammu and Kashmir with annual loss of Rs 2288 crore is not alone.
“As many as 21 state electricity departments face similar situation with Rajasthan topping the list showing a whopping Rs 11209 crore loss in power sector. It is followed by Tamil Nadu where the loss is Rs 8090 crore. J&K stands at fifth position in annual losses.” The report that analyses the renewable energy sector projects minister’s home state as a “non-performer in exploiting any renewable energy.”
According to the report, in solar energy Gujarat leads the chart with its installed capacity of 860 MW followed by Rajasthan with 666 MW.
J&K features nowhere in the list with zero MW capacity project installed anywhere in the state. The only achievement for J&K has been the installation of small 308 kWp plants under Jawahar Lal Nehru National Solar Mission. In J&K most of these plants are in Ladakh region. In comparison 42157 such plants were installed all over India.
In wind sector the situation is even worse. Among India’s installed wind power projects of 20149 MW, not a single MW comes from Jammu and Kashmir. Tamil Nadu has installed wind energy project of 7200 MW capacity by December 2013 and Gujarat follows with installed capacity of 3074 MWs. Although Jammu and Kashmir is among the top seven states having the high wind energy potential, state government has been unable to start even a single project. According to the report, at 50 metre height the installable wind energy potential in Jammu and Kashmir is 5311 and at 80 metre height the wind energy potential is 5685 MW.
The dismal performance continues in SHP sector that constitutes projects below 25 MW capacities.
According to the report, “J&K has almost 1,500 MW of SHP potential but has developed around 150 MW only.” In comparison, Karnataka with potential of 3177 MW has installed 1000 MW. Neighboring Himachal Pradesh has constructed SHPs to generate 583 MWs.
The report also criticized the state policy for Micro/Mini hydro power projects for being silent on any environmental norms or ecological flow regulations.
In utilizing agricultural and agro-industrial residues (collectively called biomass) for energy generation, Jammu and Kashmir is yet to plan any project. Here Uttar Pradesh leads the pack with installed capacity of 776 MWs of electricity from biomass. In waste to energy sector, the report says that power generation potential of waste generated in Srinagar city is 8.5 MWs and none of it has been exploited so far.
According to the report, the current grid connected generation of renewable energy in India stands at 30,178 MW. Jammu and Kashmir’s share stands at dismal 150 MWs, all of which is generated in SHP projects. In off-grid generation of 973 MW, the share of J&K is almost zero.
The report emphasizes the need for making efforts to generate electricity from renewable sources without harming the environment.

Lastupdate on : Sat, 1 Mar 2014 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sat, 1 Mar 2014 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sun, 2 Mar 2014 00:00:00 IST

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