The Delhi Metro is not only the country’s largest metro network, but it also enjoys the rare distinction of contributing to around 40 per cent of the city’s total solar power generation.
So far, all agencies in the national Capital have put together an installed solar power capacity of only about 7 megawatt (MW), out of which 2.8 MW is generated by the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) alone.
These roof-top solar systems are installed on a number of its stations, depots and office buildings.
The project does not just stop here. Under the upcoming Phase-III, and subsequently in Phase-IV, the DMRC plans to make every station self-sustaining to some extent with the help of solar energy. “The immediate target is to have an installed solar roof-top power capacity of 50 MW across Delhi Metro’s network of stations in and around the National Capital Region,” said an official.
The DMRC has been looking to switch to solar power as its power bills have been increasing rapidly over the last few years. Since it falls under the non-domestic and non-residential category of consumers, it pays a significantly higher tariff for electricity consumed.
The peak power demand of the DMRC is around 150 MW, which is expected to increase to 250 MW once Phase-III is operational. It also plans to acquire electricity from large-scale solar power projects to meet all of its future needs.
As getting land in Delhi to set up large-scale solar power projects is extremely difficult, sources said that the DMRC is likely to sign a long-term power purchase agreement for a solar power project in Rajasthan.