A 16-storeyed Cliff Tower residential complex at Lokhandwala, Andheri (West), has installed 120 solar panels atop its building. the panels generate 30 kilowatt (kW) solar energy per hour that lights up its common areas, passage, terrace and compound lights and powers three lifts and five water pumps.
“Our monthly bill was Rs55,000. After installing this clean energy source, we save Rs50,000 every month. What we spent every month will now be spent in a year reducing our annual expenditure by 90%,” said R Sahgal, secretary, Cliff Tower.
The society has also installed a net meter system.
“The system allows excess electricity generated by the solar panels to be sent back to the grid, which is compensated by the electricity supplier at the end of the year,” said Rishabh Tatia, director, Green Option Private Limited that installed the system manufactured by Tata Power Solar.
Tatia added that if the society generates 4,500 units of electricity per month via solar power vis-a-vis the requirement of 4,200 units, the additional 300 units will be carried over to the next month and so on.
The society spent Rs 23 lakh to set up the project that will be recovered over the next four years. “The panels generate 100% solar power during 10 months of the year, but there is a 35% decrease during cloudy days in July and August,” said committee member Sushil Jain.
“There is a lot of incentive for large commercial buildings, institutions and housing complexes to switch to solar energy. If more institutions opt for rooftop solar projects, it will have a significant impact on reducing carbon emissions for a city like Mumbai,” said Rakesh Kumar, director, National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI).
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