In a remarkable feat, the Visakhapatnam Port recently announced that since May 2016, it has been running on 100 percent solar energy. According to the officials, it is by far the first and only port in the country to have achieved this milestone.
A Visakhapatnam Port Trust official informed Mercom, “The 10 MW captive solar project was commissioned on May 17, 2016, and since then the port has become energy self-sufficient.”
“The captive solar PV project generates enough electricity to meet our demands and also allows us to sell the extra power generated to private operators (third-party) in the port,” added the official.
The official also told Mercom that Jakson Engineers has completed the project at the port.
Talking about revenue generation from the sale of power from this project, the official said, “In the first half of 2018, we sold power to third-party consumers at a tariff of ₹5.53 (~$0.078)/kWh. This tariff is mutually beneficial, because if we supply to distribution companies, the tariff will be about ₹3.50 (~$0.049)/kWh. Now, if these private operators procure from DISCOMs, they will have to pay around ₹7 (~$0.098)/kWh. By selling our power we are benefited by ₹2 (~$0.028)/kWh and the third-party is also benefited by nearly the same amount.”
“Currently, we are selling 50 percent of our generation to third-party buyers. For instance, we recently tendered 750,000 units of banked electricity (generated from solar project) to be procured by third-parties,” the official added.
When asked if the port was eyeing further expansion of solar, the official said, “We do not have more land for the solar project. But yes, we have identified many rooftop spaces that are vacant and can be utilized for setting up rooftop solar PV projects. Soon, even those will be operational.”
Mercom previously reported, Bosch, a supplier of technology and services, commissioned a 4 MW solar project at the New Mangalore Port Trust.
Saumy is a senior staff reporter with MercomIndia.com covering business and energy news since 2016. Prior to Mercom, Saumy was a copy editor at Thomson Reuters. Saumy earned his Bachelors Degree in Journalism & Mass Communication from the Manipal Institute of Communication at Manipal University. More articles from Saumy Prateek.