Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Maha to get first ‘Decentralised Renewable Energy Policy’: MEDA D-G

In a significant step toward sustainable development and combating climate change, the Maharashtra Energy Development Agency (MEDA) will soon unveil a ‘Decentralised Renewable Energy Policy’ for the state, a top official said.

The Pune-based MEDA Director-General Dr Kadambari Balkawade, IAS, said the pioneering policy aims to encapsulate a spectrum of energy sources, including wind, solar and hydro, to place Maharashtra on the map for progressing energy strategies.

“The draft policy, demonstrating our unwavering commitment to pioneering a future where energy is sustainable, accessible and instrumental in propelling the state forward to an ecologically balance future, has been shared with the state government or approval, and shall be announced later,” Dr Balkawade said.

She was addressing a virtual town hall meeting organised by the Environment & Climate Change Department’s ‘Majhi Vasundhra 4.0’, and Climate Voices under Mission LiFE. Principal Secretary of the ECC Department Pravin Darade highlighted the state’s readiness and the strategic framework with the Maharashtra Climate Action Plan, District Level Action Plan and respective City Action Plans.

“The imperativeness of synchronising and executing all these plans collectively to form a formidable front against climate change while underscoring the integral role of each stakeholder in propelling sustainable development,” he said.

Other speakers include experts like Madhura Joshi (E3G), Dr S. P. Gon Chaudhuri (International Solar Innovation Council), Ashwin Gambhir (Prayas Energy Group), and Sudhir Budhay, an activist for rooftop solar. The meeting was informed that under the Mukhyamantri Saur Krishhi Vahini Yojana 2.0, Mission 2025 targets generating 7,000MW through solar energy that would not only bolster the sector with sustainable power sources but give a big boost to employment opportunities.

As per the Solar Power Mission 2025 plan envisioning a sustainable and self-sufficient future, by December 2025, every district in the state will power 30 percent of its agricultural feeders using solar energy.

In order to maximise utility and simultaneously uphold the welfare of the farmers, their unutilised land will be leased by paying them an annual rent of Rs 1.25 lakh without disturbing the land title in the possession of the farmers, a policy that has earned accolades.

Certain community initiatives like the Shree Shirdi Saibaba Trust setting up one of Asia’s largest solar plants with an innovative solar kitchen setup, and the success of 100 women to turn Satara’s Manyachiwadi village as one of the state’s premier ‘solar villages’, were also highlighted.

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