West Bengal - Fishing for Energy Sources
India is rapidly moving towards accepting and acknowledging energy-efficient alternatives to conventional energy sources. The recent Indian Residential Energy Survey conducted by the Initiative for Sustainable Energy Policy and Council on Energy, Environment, and Water showed that Indian households adopt energy-efficient appliances, especially the ones marked under the mandatory labelling Programme.
It has been seen that out of 15,000 houses, covered over 21 states, around 60% of refrigerators and 75% of air conditioners are stars labelled, and around 90% of the houses use LED tubes or lamps. These figures picture a positive beginning, however, the consumption of residential electricity in India is going to double by 2030. Energy Efficiency is said to be the only driving force in meeting India’s climatic and environmental goals.
West Bengal is known to be the 10th largest consumer of electricity according to the report generated jointly by the Government of India and the West Bengal Government in 2016. In the same year, the joint government had also launched the “24X7 Power for All” Program, which aimed at providing a constant and reliable source of electricity to all household, commercial and industrial units by the end of Financial Year 2019.
Most of the demands are met by the sources available in the state. West Bengal’s Perspective Power Planning Committee (2006) estimates the overall consumption of power is going to be around 71,351 MU by the end of the Financial Year 2021. Over the past 10 years, power consumption has risen from 492kWH to the present consumption figure.
Following are the DISCOMS established across the state to meet the energy needs-
Calcutta Electricity Supply Co.(CESC)
Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC)
Dishergarh Power Co. Ltd.
Durgapur Project Limited
The DISCOMS has 9891.66 Megawatts including 9220.19 from Thermal, 92.88 from Nuclear, 315.88 from Hydro, and 262.71 from other Renewable Energy Sources. The State Government is encouraging setting up renewable energy-based power plants across the state.
Policy or Framework in place for Energy Efficiency across West Bengal
The state of West Bengal has an abundant source of Renewable Energy resources such as wind, solar, biogas, hydro, biomass, tidal, etc. It is also known to be the pioneer in establishing the usage of solar technology.
West Bengal Renewable Energy Development Agency (BREDA), established in 1993, looks into promoting renewable energy technologies to ensure a cleaner generation of power for the upcoming generations. The BREDA is also responsible for implementing all kinds of non-conventional energy programmes across the state.
The recent West Bengal Energy Conservation Building Code, 2020 was introduced to monitor energy efficiency and conservation in buildings. This code was made effective from 14th January 2020 and is applicable for complexes or buildings with an altogether 100 kW or higher are to be used as commercial properties.
The other mandatory regulation issued by the West Bengal government was to install solar rooftop systems in all housing societies where the energy demand is above 500kW. This was introduced for households to meet at least 1.5% of their total electrical load through renewable sources of energy.
The State Government has also taken a step forward by forming the West Bengal Green Energy Corporation Limited (WBGECL) to attract investments into the renewable energy sector.
Besides these significant efforts, the West Bengal Government also supports the Indian Government’s Perform Achieve and Trade (PAT) Scheme to advocate energy efficiency in large industries.
The primary motive of the WBREDA is to harness power for alternate sources of energy to meet domestic, commercial, and industrial needs. Therefore all efforts must be directed toward achieving this goal of Energy Conservation, Energy Efficiency, and reverse Climate Change Issues and Global Warming.
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