Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K Sangma has announced zero investment for people who wanted to install rooftop solar panels.

He announced this while launching the Meghalaya Roof Top Solar Portal of the Meghalaya Energy Corporation Limited (MeECL) in Shillong on Friday with a mission to make Meghalaya power surplus.

“People who are installing rooftop solar panels will have to do zero investment. They will get 40% subsidy from the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), 50% from the vendor, and 10% from the Meghalaya Power Distribution Corporation Limited (MePDCL).

“Consumers who install solar panels will pay Rs 2 lesser to the MeECL as compared to Rs 6 per unit that they are paying right now,” Sangma said.

He said that when the consumers are not using electricity from solar panels, they will earn 1 rupee per unit from the MeECL. “Consumers can apply for this scheme through the unified solar rooftop portal,” the chief minister informed.

Stating that the State has a long way to go in generating energy from alternative sources, Sangma said, “The State has the capacity and opportunity to harness solar energy and this is where solar projects like these are important for us.”

“The State government is looking forward to making this sector grow. The State will benefit by using renewable energy and it will also help reduce Co2 emissions,” he added.

Sangma also said that hydropower plants are not enough to meet the consumption needs of the State.

“Generating power from other alternative sources is less than one percent. Therefore some of the quick ways to reduce power deficiency is to have an efficient power system,” he stressed.

Sangma applauded the efforts of the MeECL in achieving this milestone and in addressing the power crisis in the State which will ensure improved, reliable and affordable power supply to all electricity consumers of the State.

He also expressed his gratitude to the Power Minister for bringing a significant change to the power scenario in the State which is suffering from a power shortage for decades.

The Meghalaya government has been driving the solar power initiative in the State with a great thrust in order to improve energy access and reduce the carbon footprints of the State.

Meghalaya received the highest sanction of funds from the Ministry of New Renewable Energy (MNRE) among all the North-Eastern states with a sanctioned capacity of 70 MW (Megawatt) in the first phase.

Under this scheme, consumers will be able to rent their rooftops and sell excess electricity generated from the solar systems to local electricity utilities.

In this way, the consumers will also become ‘prosumers’. This Scheme will benefit 23,000 households with a maximum of 3 kilowatt per household.

This programme also provides for NET Metering where the power generated is first utilized by the consumers to meet their requirements and excess electricity is exposed to the grid.

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