The Financial Express

Solar energy sector seeks govt's support to survive

Covid-19 hits business severely

| Updated: July 12, 2020 21:04:47

Solar energy sector seeks govt's support to survive

The Bangladesh Solar and Renewable Energy Association (BSREA) has identified nine key areas where the government needs to provide heightened importance to help rehabilitate the local solar sector which has experienced a severe blow from the Covid-19 pandemic.

In a recent letter to the ministry of finance the association leaders said the critical situation of coronavirus caused irreparable damage to the solar power and renewable energy business.

Only the greatest efforts can help overcome the situation and reach the government's goal to generate 10 per cent power from renewable energy sources by next year, BSREA president Dipal C Barua said in the letter.

He requested the government to give importance in agricultural production through solar irrigation pumps, implementing 'My Village, My Town' project through renewable energy, power generation through floating solar power plant, and setting up solar PV- Diesel Hybrid mini cold storage.

The association chief also requested for taking projects for electrification of cyclone shelter centers, community clinics, and primary/secondary schools through renewable energy, quickening procedures for setting up of solar rooftop net metering projects in every public and private buildings, and electrification of rural areas by solar street lights.

Mr Barua in the letter mentioned that global food production is under serious threat due to the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic.

He said farmers can be provided with small-sized solar irrigation pumps at subsidised rates.

Mr Barua also wrote that the government can take steps to implement the 'My Village, My Town' project through renewable energy to offset the damage caused by the ongoing global Covid-19 virus pandemic.

With the implementation of this project, the civic services of the city can be easily delivered to the village without any harm to the rural environment, he added.

"Floating photovoltaic system is a novel idea in renewable energy production without putting an additional burden on water and land resources," he said and added Bangladesh has a total of 14,741 million hectors of water bodies including rivers, bills and haors, estuaries and mangrove swamps.

Besides, he said, there are millions of small and big-sized ponds which can be used for installing floating photovoltaic system. Bangladesh has a prospect of generating 5,000 megawatt of electricity by floating photovoltaic systems.

Association member and managing director of Solar EPC Development Ltd Ezaz Al Qudat A Mazid told the FE implementing utility-scale solar projects, solar irrigation, and solar rooftop project will create employment opportunities which will help the economy to recover fast.

"IPP solar projects, especially floating solar projects, are the ultimate future for Bangladesh's clean energy transition," he said.

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