On green track, Nagpur metro to get power from renewable sources

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The ₹8,680-crore Nagpur Metro Rail project is planning to allow its infrastructure to be utilised by a renewable energy service company to generate about 14 MW of solar power.The selected Renewable Energy Service Company (RESCO) could invest about ₹100 crore in setting up the solar panels on the rooftops, boundary walls, viaducts and vacant lands of the metro project, according to Brijesh Dixit, Managing Director of Nagpur Metro.Dixit told BusinessLine that the metro will one the greenest public transportation projects in the country.About two-thirds of the power requirement will be generated from renewable sources. Right from inception, project sites have been designed to accommodate the panels.  The Nagpur metro chief said a survey for setting up the panels is underway. In about a month’s time, a Detailed Project Report will be ready, which will lay down the technical parameters and business model for generating solar power. After that, bids will be called for. Dixit pointed out that the selected RESCO will use the sites of Nagpur metro for generating power, which will then be sold back to the metro at a pre-determined rate. The RESCO will remain invested in the project for 25 years.He said that by using the RESCO model, Nagpur metro was hedging its risks as well as providing long-term energy security to the project.On the financing front, Dixit said the Union Finance Ministry, along with the Maharashtra government, was in advance stages of talks with German multi-lateral bank KFW for a €500 million loan.The negotiations are expected to be concluded by March 31. By mid-April, the Nagpur metro management is also expected to tie up another €150 million of loan from AFD of France.Dixit added that civil works on 22 km length, which is half the total length of the metro project, has already commenced. The line is expected to be operational by 2018.

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