Solar Power Lights up Sundarbans Island

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Solar Power Lights up Sundarbans Island

  • After Cyclone Amphan hit the Sundarbans, the island territory remained in darkness for more than two weeks.
  • Cyclone Amphan
    • Uprooted trees
    • Electric poles
    • Snapped wires
  • Now, a part of Satjelia Island within Gosaba block is managing to get some light through solar micro-grids.
Solar Power Lights up Sundarbans Island

Overview

  • Solar micro-grids are
    • Small
    • Localized grids
    • Supply electricity in the range of 10 - 100 kilowatt.
  • These grids are not connected to main grid.
  • These micro-grids cater to only the local population.
  • Non-profit WWF built six (10 KW each) such micro-grids in Satjelia island.
  • These will cater to about 600 families.
  • Kumirmari Island and Gosaba block will also get one more such grid each.
  • A family needs to pay ₹ 50 a month to use three electrical points, generally
    • A tube light
    • A fan
    • A television
  • Mobile phones can be charged as well.
  • Most families using micro-grids consume around 15 units per month.
  • The main grid is used only when a family consumes more than 15 units.
  • The cyclone underlines the importance of solar power in extreme weather event prone areas.
  • Sundarbans are equipped with one of the highest solar power installations in the world since mid-1990s- with about 200,000 off-grid connections.
  • After the entry of mainstream electric grid in 2012, the thrust on solar gradually eroded.
  • The situation became even worse with the main grid reaching Sagar Island under Integrated Coastal Zone Management, supported by World Bank.
  • Sagar Island is the highest habited island in Sundarbans along to adjoining islands.
  • Almost all 20 government run micro grids became nonfunctional as the main grid was installed in different island.
  • The power department has ignored this altogether.
  • The entire micro-grid of Mousuni had been left abandoned at one side of the Panchayat building.

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