KOLKATA: Solar panels — 36 of them — lit up College Square on Sunday evening as the trial run for the green energy scheme was kicked off. The test run with the panels, capable of generating around 15kW per hour, will continue for a few weeks before the Kolkata Municipal Corporation formally inaugurates the system.
Solar power expert Santi Pada Gon Chaudhuri, who heads the city-based Arka Renewable Energy College, has designed and provided technical assistance to KMC to set up the panels. “We worked over the last month to set up the panels at College Square. We started the initiative of installing solar panels with Deshapriya Park, where 50 panels were set up last year. We have taken the panels to several other places in the city. Another 20 parks will get solar lighting soon,” Gon Chaudhuri said.
He said the College Square solar lighting project was jointly taken up by KMC and Arka Renewable Energy College with Rs 40 lakh being sanctioned by the power department. “There are 36 light panels, each with 200-watt capacity,” he said. The entire waterbody at College Square will soon be lit up on solar power.
Gon Chaudhuri said about Rs 26,000 in monthly electricity bills would be saved at College Square. “At present, an electricity bill of about Rs 30,000 per month is generated at College Square,” he said.
KMC’s MMIC (Parks and Gardens) Debashis Kumar said the solar lighting systems at three other places — Patuli, Sarsuna and Behala — along with College Square will be formally inaugurated later this month.
According to KMC officials, once this system is installed at all the parks, around Rs 8 crore in electricity cost will be saved per year.