The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy has earmarked funds to the tune of Rs. 95 crore for implementation of its ‘Development of Solar Cities Program’ during 2013 – 14 and the rest of the 12th Five Year Plan period.
Out of the total amount planned to be spent on developing solar cities, around Rs. 8 crore has been set aside for 2013 – 14.
The MNRE’s program aims to promote use of renewable energy in urban areas of the country through support to municipal corporations in preparation and implementation of a roadmap for developing their respective cities as solar cities.
The main objectives of the program for developing solar cities include empowering urban local governments so that energy challenges can be addressed at the city level, providing a framework and support in preparing a master plan covering assessment of current energy situation as well as future demand and action plans, building capacity in urban local bodies and creating awareness among all sections of civil society, involving stakeholders in the planning process and overseeing implementation of sustainable energy options through public-private partnerships.
A total of 60 cities, towns and urban agglomerations (class I – III) notified by municipal authorities and local governments, with atleast one located in each state, will be developed as solar cities during 2013-14 and the rest of the 12th Five Year Plan period under the MNRE’s program. Already, 45 solar cities have received sanction.
Out of the target set for developing solar cities, 15 cities are proposed to be developed as pilot solar cities. Again, 10 pilot solar cities have already been sanctioned.
Among the 60 solar cities, eight cities will be developed as model solar cities with part financial support for installation of renewable energy and energy conservation projects, devices and systems. Sanction has already been provided for 4 model solar cities.
In addition to development of 60 solar cities, the MNRE’s program will cover preparation of master plan/Detailed Project Report including action plan with regard to renewable energy installations, green campus development, awareness generation and training for about 100 small townships and campuses, both new and existing ones, developed by promoters and builders with permission from concerned authorities, and also SEZs, industrial towns and institutional campuses.