Bihar energy minister Bijendra Prasad Yadav has said availability of land was a major hurdle in promoting sustainable energy in the state.
“The scope for two wings of sustainable energy — wind and hydel — is extremely limited in Bihar. Of course, there is scope for development of solar energy, but land availability is a major hurdle in achieving it,” the minister said at the 11th Asia Pacific Committee on Sustainable Energy & Environmental Technologies (APCSEET) conference on Monday.
Bihar is the first Indian state to host the event.
Yadav’s admission is significant given the fact that against its total power availability of 3000-odd MW, Bihar’s sustainable energy mix was less than 1%, as APCSEET chairperson Sangeeta Sinha said, while stressing on development of an efficient cooperative system in promoting solar energy in Bihar.
Admitting that sustainable or renewable energy was a must for environment protection, Yadav said it was up to scientists to come out with a mechanism where land hurdle would not pose any problem. “The needs are real and immediate. Yet it is necessary to develop ways to meet these needs, keeping in mind the ground realities,” he added.
Director of Jodhpur-based Aravali Institute of Management in Rajasthan, Varun Arya, came out with a workable solution on this count.
Citing his experience of setting up the university in Jodhpur, Arya said there was need to tap owners of lands which were not suitable for any purpose, be it agriculture or real estate.
“In Jodhpur, we faced land hurdle at the initial stages. Finally, we approached those land owners who had no purchasers for their property. We purchased their land for setting up the institute. Right things must necessarily be done the right way only and there should be no compromise at all,” Arya said.
SP Gan Chowdhury, former director of the West Bengal Renewable Energy Development Authority, said Bihar’s problem in tapping solar energy was due to lack of cooperative system. This, he said, was also responsible for lack of availability of land for the purpose.