Ministry: Ministry of New and Renewable Energy
Features of the Scheme:
Installation of grid-connected solar power plants each of capacity up to 2 MW in the rural areas;
Installation of standalone off-grid solar water pumps to fulfill irrigation needs of farmers not connected to grid;
Solarisation of existing grid-connected agriculture pumps to make farmers independent of grid supply and also enable them to sell surplus solar power generated to DISCOM and get extra income; and
Solarisation of tube-wells and lift irrigation projects of Government sector.
Components of the Scheme:
The scheme has four components namely,
Utilisation of Barren land by farmers:
Government is expecting 10,000 MW out of this.
No subsidy would be provided to buy equipment, , but discoms would be given 50 paise per unit as generation based incentives to buy power from farmers for five years.
Installation of 17.5 lakh off-grid farm pumps:
Solarisation of grid connected farm pumps:
Solarisation of government grid connected water pumps.
Benefits of the Scheme:
It will increase farmer income.
Reduce transmission losses incurred in transmission of electricity to rural areas. The drop in losses is expected to be from 23% to 12%.
Discom's health can improve as due to decentralised generation of power, Discoms will not need to sell at subsidized rates to everyone in rural economy.
The major challenge for the scheme is to provide grid balancing. As the grid will not be provided energy in the night or in cloudy days due to its dependence on solar energy, providing continuous energy to the grid (known as grid balancing) will be the major difficulty.