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R'than aggressive in tapping, promoting green energy

                                                                                                Deccan Herald, New Delhi, 25 April, 2013

Rajasthan has surged ahead of other states in achieving targets for renewable energy. It has emerged as one of the top states in promoting ‘green energy’ in the country. A recent report by Greenpeace India on ‘Powering ahead with Renewable- Leaders and Laggards’ has revealed this.

The report said Rajasthan was among the top states to achieve the targets (renewal purchase obligation) set to harness renewable energy –including solar, wind and biomass energy. As against the state target set by various regulators fixed at five per cent and national target at seven per cent, Rajasthan achieved six percent as target, the report stated.

The state has been making serious efforts to reduce its dependence on coal based thermal power plants and to rely more on solar, wind and biomass energy.

The report said the state achieved this status as it has enormous potential in solar energy and its recent efforts have shown results. After Gujarat, Rajasthan is considered the second state having huge potential for solar energy. The government is also promoting wind energy in the deserts region of western Rajasthan in a big way.

This is the result of policy initiatives of the government. “There was only a single policy for renewable energy till 2004 with no distinction between solar, wind and biomass,” said an officer.

However, this changed after 2004, when separate policies for all these sources of renewable energy were formed with more stress on each energy source.

Recently, to popularise solar energy the energy department has offered 50 per cent subsidy to public to install 1 KW capacity solar plant on the roofs of their homes.
 S K Agarwal, principal secretary, energy department said “the plant costs around Rs 70,000 of which government will give 50 per cent subsidy. This will help to popularise the use of solar energy in the state.”