Hydroelectricity generation has been a common practice in Uttarakhand. Now solar energy is being harnessed in the city of Nainital by a farmer. A woman from Nainital, Pushpa Sharma along with two other adjacent field owners have installed solar panels in their fields for generating 450 kilowatt power electricity supply. This electricity will be commercially sold to the Power Corporation. The pact for using solar panels to generate and provide electricity to the corporation has been signed for the coming 25 years.
Bail Padav Gaon of Ram nagar in Nainital was the main market for trade of bullocks and other draught animals. Now after the ban of such illegal animal trade, the residents of the village are resorting to other trades. Most of them have started leasing their fields for electricity production using solar panels.
Kuber Singh of Bail Padav village was awarded for his contribution to sustainable development by generating hydroelectricity on a small scale.
Kuber Singh helped light up many lives using his innovative water mill. He diverted the stream flowing behind his house and used water mill wheels to direct water into the rotor. This way he generated electricity using a renewable energy source.
Kuber Singh has done his schooling till eight standard. He worked as a motor mechanic and in the process got the idea for using water for electricity generation. The turbine and rotor are not functional now. Currently Kuber Singh takes tourists for rides and does the job of a travel guide.
Pushpa Sharma in 2016 had installed a 300 kilowatt solar energy panel in her field. Pradyut Kansal jointly had installed a 150 kilowatt solar panel system. They were aided by Uttarakhand Renewable Development Agency, UREDA. She is being payed 5 rupees 35 paese per unit.
UREDA District Project Officer addressed the press about how initiatives at individual level have helped Nainital progress as the leading city using renewable energy source. He further said that the biggest solar energy plot in Mohan, Nainital with a power capacity of 500 kilowatt, was installed in 2014 by the efforts and initiatives of an individual. The solar panel system was installed by IAS officer Ashok Aneja. He was payed 9 rupees 6 paese per unit by the power corporation.
Similarly in 2015 Punit Pant, of a village near Pirumadar was payed 6 rupees 35 paese per unit.
E. Nitin Garkhal of UREDA enlightened about how the agency has adopted a first come first serve scheme for buying electricity from interested residents.
Later others joined hands and showed interest in generating power using solar energy. A lot of applicants benefited from the central subsidy scheme for the installation of solar panels in their fields.
Within a year the cumulative efforts at individual level for using the solar energy are generating a massive electricity supply. The statics being Belbaba 100 kilowatt, Bhimtal has 20 kilowatt and Kathgodam 3 kilowatt.
According to the Central Subsidy scheme a landlord can use his field for generating electricity using solar energy. For doing this the applicant will get a 30% subsidy by UREDA. Any person willing to use his field for generation of solar electricity can apply for the same to UREDA.