Pavagada solar park, World's largest solar park launched in Karnataka

Ayupp

India, Karnataka: Yet another milestone by the Karnataka government and in the solar sector. The world's largest solar park set up have come up in India, Karnataka at Pavagada in Karnataka 's Tumakuru district was launched by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah.

Pavagada Solar Park is a solar park spread over a total area of 13,000 acres (53 km2) in Pavagada taluk, Tumkur district, Karnataka. 200 MW of power was commissioned by 31 January 2018, and a further 1,400 MW by March 2018.

The total investment required to build 2,000 MW of capacity was estimated at ₹14,800 crore (US$2.3 billion). By the end of 2018, the park is planned to have a total capacity of 2,700 MW. Pavagada Solar Park is the largest photovoltaic power station in the world.

The 2,000 MW Park, named as 'Shakti Sthala', spans across 13,000 acres spread over five villages and is a benchmark in the unique people's participation in power model put on ground, according to officials.

The construction of the park began in October 2016 and the commission date was March 2018. The project has been executed within a record time of two years, with zero land acquisition, Siddaramaiah said. So indeed it is a big achievement by any state government.

The solar park's development was done by the Karnataka Solar Power Development Corp. Ltd (KSPDCL), a joint venture company formed in March 2015, between Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Ltd (KREDL) and Solar Energy Corp. of India (SECI).

Moreover, the farmers who have leased out their land are reaping greater benefits with Rs 21,000 per acre being offered as rental, an amount which has the scope to grow by five per cent every two years, he said. The beneficiaries of this project were 2,300 Pavagada farmers, he said.

The park will create employment and act as an incentive for natives and farmers to explore new opportunities of socio-economic growth in the region. The state has witnessed an overall increase in capacity to 2,3379 MW as on January 2018. 600 MW solar power generation has been commissioned during December 2017 and balance capacity of 1400 MW will be available by December this year said state Energy Minister D K Shivakumar said.

"This ambitious project, spanning five villages, looks at farmers as the key partners, as also beneficiaries. Shakti Sthala is creating new job opportunities and economic growth leading to the prosperity of the people of Pavagada," he said.

Why Pavagada

  1. Pavagada region receives very little rainfall and has a high solar radiation and availability of land.
  2. Pavagada taluk is located in a semi-arid tract, atop an elevated plateau surrounded by rocky hills.
  3. The region has been declared drought hit by the Karnataka Government 54 times in the past 6 decades.
  4. The region is scarcely populated and most of its residents are poor farmers.
  5. Many of the region's residents have migrated to Bangalore, located about 180 km away, for economic reasons.

Earlier, a 648-mw power project set up by the Adani Green Energy, part of the Adani Group, in Tamil Nadu in 2016 was billed as the world's largest solar plant.

Commissioning

On 14 December 2017, Fortum announced that it had connected a 100MW solar plant at Pavagada to the grid. Tata Power Renewable Energy Ltd commissioned 100 MW at the park by 19 December, and an additional 50 MW by 2 January 2018. Pavagada Solar Park had a total commissioned capacity of 2000 MW by 1 March 2018. Curently it become a operating world largest solar park by generating total 2000MW.



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