The Pune metro rail, which is being developed by Maha Metro, aims to draw 65 per cent of its energy needs from solar panels which will be installed on the metro, officials of Maha-metro said at an even held on World Environment Day in Chinchwad. Speaking at a function to celebrate the World Environment Day, Brijesh Dixit, Managing Director, MAHA-Metro said on Monday that they plan to generate 17 MW energy in the first phase through solar.
According to Dixit, electric vehicles will be used for the feeder service to connect between important stops and points to metro stations. Their batteries can be charged using solar power, he said. “Adopting and integrating solar energy generation from project planning and design stage is our motto. In the phase one, we will generate 17-megawatt energy through solar. The Pune Metro will become one of the very few metros in the world to get atleast 65% of the required power from renewable energy mainly from Solar,” said Dixit.
Ramnath Subramniam, Executive Director of Maha-metro, said that around 30 per cent cost of running the metro is energy-related. The dearth of timely public transport has made metro an essential development in order to connect the twin cities of Pimpri-Chinchwad and Pune, claimed Dr Brijesh Dixit, Managing Director of Maha-metro.
The project will be a better version of its parent project, the Delhi metro, which was the first metro rail to be introduced in the country, said Dr Dixit. In light of the environmental impact and pollution caused in the national capital, Dr Dixit claimed that the aim is to lower the environmental impact by learning from the mistakes of the previous projects.
A representative of RITES, a research organisation, went far enough to claim that the project will not have any impact whatsoever on the wetlands around Mutha river. Of the 31 km metro line to be constructed in the first phase, 1.7km will be through the Mutha river, according to the plan presented at the event.
The 1.7 km stretch on the river, one of the landmarks of the city, has been a sticking point in the project for some time.
In January this year, the Western Zone bench of the National Green Tribunal (NGT) had put a stay on the construction. The interim stay was lifted by the Supreme Court of India later in the month after the Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) questioned the jurisdiction of NGT in the matter. The apex court maintained that NGT’s jurisdiction cannot be challenged. The case, filed by environmental activist and architect Saran Yadwadkar, will be next heard on 20 July. “It is not a road block anymore as the Supreme Court has lifted the stay. They (the applicants) are simply apprehensive of the metro,” said Dr Dixit who was visibly not concerned of the case pending in NGT.