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Cabinet approves new solar energy scheme for farmers

New Delhi, Feb 19 (IANS) The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Tuesday approved the launch of Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthaan Mahabhiyan with the objective of providing financial and water security to farmers.

The proposed scheme consists of three components. All three components combined, the scheme aims to add a solar capacity of 25,750 MW by 2022, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said.

The total central financial support provided under the scheme would be Rs 34,422 crore, he added.

Component-A is 10,000 MW of decentralized ground mounted grid connected renewable power plants, Component-B is installation of 17.50 lakh standalone solar-powered agriculture pumps and Component-C is solarisation of 10 lakh grid-connected solar powered agriculture pumps.

The Component-A and Component-C will be implemented on pilot mode for 1000 MW capacity and one lakh grid connected agriculture pumps respectively and thereafter, will be scaled-up on the success of the pilot run. Component-B will be implemented in full-fledged manner.

Under Component A, renewable power plants of capacity 500 KW to 2 MW will be set up by individual farmers/cooperatives/panchayats/farmer producer organisations on their barren or cultivable lands.

The power generated will be purchased by the Discoms in tariffs determined by respective state electricity regulatory commission. The scheme will open a stable and continuous source of income to the rural land owners. Performance-based incentives, at the rate of Rs 0.40 per unit for five years, will be provided to Discoms.

Under Component B, individual farmers will be supported to install standalone solar pumps of capacity up to 7.5 HP. Solar PV capacity in kW equal to the pump capacity in HP is allowed under the scheme.

Under Component C of the scheme, individual farmers will be supported to solarise pumps of capacity up to 7.5 HP. Solar PV capacity up to two times of pump capacity in kW is allowed under the scheme.

The farmers will be able to use the generated energy to meet their irrigation needs and the excess available energy will be sold to Discoms. This will help to create an avenue for extra income to the farmers.

The Scheme will have substantial environmental impact in terms of savings of CO2 emissions.

All three components of the Scheme combined together are likely to result in saving of about 27 million tonnes of CO2 emission per annum, an official release said.

The Component-B of the Scheme on standalone solar pumps may result in saving of 1.2 billion litres of diesel per annum and associated savings in the foreign exchange due to reduction of import of crude oil.

Besides, the proposal is likely to generate employment opportunity equivalent to 6.31 lakh job years for skilled and unskilled workers, it said.



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