PATNA: Deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi (SuMo) said on Sunday the power plants at Pirpainti in Bhagalpur and Kajra in Lakhisarai, which were initially proposed to be coal-based thermal power plants, would now be solar power plants.
“The two power plants are slated to be commissioned by 2022 and each will produce 350MW of electricity using solar energy. The state government is committed to producing 2000MW of electricity through solar energy by 2022,” SuMo said at the East India Climate Change Conclave here.
Elaborating on other steps being taken by the state government for the cause of environment protection and averting climate change, he said no brick kilns would be allowed to operate without adopting to clean technologies. “The brick kilns which operate on clean technologies required three tonne less coal in producing one lakh bricks as compared to the conventional kilns,” SuMo said.
He also said 15 crore saplings would be planted in Bihar over the next five years to increase the green cover in the state.
Speaking on the impact of climate change in Bihar, SuMo cited the example of damage caused to the maize crop due to excessive low temperature conditions in the last winter. “Sprouting could not happen in the standing maize crops due to extreme winter conditions. Consequently, the total maize production went down by 12 lakh metric tonne in 201718, compared to 2016-17. Around 1 lakh farmers in 14 districts were affected by it,” he said.
SuMo said the state agriculture department was working on projects entailing an estimated outlay of Rs23 crore sanctioned under National Adaptation Fund on Climate Change. He also said the Centre had given in-principal approval to a state government scheme entailing an outlay of Rs339 crore under Green Climate Fund.
He also proposed to rename state environment and forests department as department of environment, forest and climate change on the lines of the Union ministry. CM Nitish Kumar, who was also present, gave his consent to the proposal.