Houses on wheels sets off to tell India solar power has arrived
A small house on wheels with all the electrical appliances used in a typical household — but all powered by rooftop solar panels and within approachable budget — the Solar Comet was flagged off on the World Environment Day for a 20-day tour.
The solar bus is expected to bust myths and create awareness about solar power. Lit up with power saving LED bulbs, the Solar Comet with its modern fixtures houses mobile charging points, a mixer grinder, an air cooler, a refrigerator, washing machine and even an air conditioner. While the temperature outside soared beyond 40 degrees Celsius, the mini-house with necessary furniture has an ambient environment.
“This project fitted with a 2 kilowatt rooftop panel demonstrates how solar power can easily run an entire household — even heavier appliances like air conditioner,” said Pujarini Sen, climate and energy campaigner, Greenpeace India.
“Another myth about solar power is that it is expensive. But in the last three years alone the installation cost per kilowatt of such panel has come down from around Rs 1 lakh to Rs 50,000. This is the ideal time to go solar,” she added.
Delhi’s total solar potential is 2,500 MW with a residential potential of 1,250 MW. The official target in Delhi is to reach 1,000 MW worth solar installations by 2020 and 2,000 MW by 2025. But as of December 2016, only 35.9 MW have been installed out of which, only 3 MW were residential installations in March 2016.
“The Delhi government came up with the city’s solar policy last year. But despite the benefits that it offers, Delhiites haven’t really woken up to the idea. Till now the response has been very low residential sectors,” Sen said.