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Puducherry Airport Becomes AAI’s first 100% Solar-Powered Airport at a Cost of Rs 2.8cr

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Puducherry airport becomes AAI’s first 100% solar-powered airportAAI achieved a major feat on October 2, 2020, by converting the Union Territory of Puducherry’s airport into its first entirely solar-powered airport in the country i.e. “absolutely power-neutral” airport with the commissioning of 500KWp(kilowatts peak) ground-mounted solar power plant at a cost of Rs 2.8 crore.

  • It was inaugurated by Lok Sabha member V Vaithilingam in the presence of Rajya Sabha member N Gokulakrishnan, AAI regional govt director R Madhavan, and Puducherry airport director Vijay Upadhyayamong others.
  • With this solar power plant, the airport will save a power bill of Rs 10 lakh per month and will also see a reduction in carbon emission footprint by 6,570 metric tonne, which is equivalent to planting 32,850 trees.

Key Points:

–The annual electrical energy consumption of the Puducherry airport on an average is 0.72 million units which will be met up by this new solar setup which has 1,540 highly efficient polycrystalline solar PV panels, and generates an average 2,000 units of energy per day.

–Notably, the total installed capacity of the solar power plants in the southern region is 5.526 MWp (MegaWatt peak), and the AAI proposes it’s enhancement to 10.5MWp during FY21.

–On the other hand, the solar energy generation for southern regional airports will increase to 30% of the total electrical energy consumption, which is 80 million units per annum, with the commissioning of ongoing projects.

Background:

The Airports Authority of India’s (AAI) has set a target of transforming the of southern regional airports into renewable energy i.e. the “power neutral region” by 2025 energy by installing its first solar power plant of 750-KWp (kilowatts peak) capacity at Kozhikode Calicut International Airport (CCJ), Kerala in 2016. The focus is to reduce carbon footprints and power bills.

Recent Related News:

i.In July 2020, Asia’s largest solar power project: Rewa Ultra Mega Solar Power Project in Madhya Pradesh was inaugurated by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, through video conferencing. The 750 MW ultra-solar power plant was developed by Rewa Ultra Mega Solar Limited (RUMSL), a joint venture of MadhyaPradesh Urja Vikas Nigam Limited (MPUVN) and Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI).

ii.On July 22, 2020, the Vice Admiral Anil Kumar Chawal, Flag Officer Commanding-in-chief, Southern Naval Command(SNC), virtually employed the 3 MegaWatt (MW) largest Solar Power Plant at the Indian Naval Academy, Ezhimala, Kerala as a part of the Indian Government’s initiative of National Solar Mission, to achieve 100 GigaWatt (GW) of solar Power by 2022.

About Airports Authority of India’s (AAI):
It is a Miniratna – Category -1 Public Sector Enterprise (PSE)
Chairman– Arvind Singh
Headquarter– New Delhi