Shimla: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh on Saturday said the central government has approved the state’s master plans for development of Shimla and Hamirpur as solar cities.
He said the ministry of new and renewable energy has also sanctioned 15 kWp (Kilowatt peak) solar power plant to be installed at Panchayat Bhawan and 20 kWp plants each at The Ridge and at the old bus stand in Shimla.
Addressing a workshop on promotion of solar technologies in the state, he said the state has the potential to become a model state in terms of promotion and tapping of solar energy.
“Our government is making efforts to promote the solar energy programme and has notified the revised solar power policy in January this year that is valid till March 2022,” he said.
As per the new policy, the government has simplified the procedures with timelines for setting up solar power plants.
The chief minister said as small hydropower sector also played a vital role in producing power at cheaper rates, five projects with combined generation capacity of 900 kw has been commissioned by HIMURJA or the Himachal Pradesh Energy Development Agency.
To provide power in the remote and tribal areas, solar power plants up to 1 kWp have been installed in the Spiti Valley.
Ministry of new and renewable energy joint secretary Tarun Kapoor said solar projects of 5,547 MW have been installed in the country till February this year. The country targets to achieve 100,000 MW of solar power by 2022.
He said India has been ranked eighth in solar production.
Kapoor, who belongs to this state, said there is abundant solar radiation in the Spiti Valley of Himachal Pradesh.