VIJAYAWADA: People are now eyeing renewable energy sources, thanks to the shortage and skyrocketing price of electricity. Solar energy happens to be the cheapest form of renewable energy and people are showing renewed interest in buying solar power units.
Andhra Pradesh government had been promoting solar energy on a big scale till 2020. Government provided subsidies on agriculture solar pump sets which received a huge response from farmers. Majority of educational institutions and government offices installed solar power units with net metering systems.
“Solar is the best suitable renewable energy generation system for our region. We will witness around 285 sunny days per annum on an average. Every household can generate electricity by installing solar panels at their homes. But people ignore them considering the high investment and maintenance,” said M Ravi Kumar, a retired divisional engineer at APSPDCL.
The situation is slowly changing with the proposed power cuts, coal shortage and power tariff hike. Enquiries for on grid and off grid solar power units have increased in the state from October 1, say traders. “The demand for solar units increased by 25 per cent after October 1. A 3 KW unit can generate up to 12 units of power. The production further increases in summer. We have sold around 14 units so far this month while we sold only 3 units in September,” said Md Ismail, a solar panel trader in Jawahar Autonagar in city. Incentives from the government in the form of subsidies will help boost the sales and we also urge the governments to create awareness campaigns, he added.
People should not have wrong conceptions on costs as one can get the investment back within four years of installing the unit,” said P Bhagavan Narayana, an environmental lover.