Rs 1b released to install solar lights in 96 municipalities

- Post Report, Kathmandu
The amount accounts for 65 percent of the govt subsidy to each municipality for promotion of solar energy

Jun 8, 2016-The Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development (MoFALD) has disbursed Rs 1 billion to 96 municipalities for the installation of around 20,000 solar-powered lights in cities, alleys and public spaces by the end of this fiscal year. 

The government has started efforts to invest in promotion and use of clean and alternative energy technologies at household and commercial levels as well as the local and municipal authorities. 

“The ongoing long load-shedding hours have prompted the government to invest in environment-friendly and sustainable energy source,” said Chiranjivi Timilsina, under-secretary at MoFALD. 

According to him, the Ministry of Finance has approved only 45 percent of Rs 2.16 billion demanded by 96 municipalities to install 43,851 solar-powered street lights this fiscal year. The allocation amounts to 65 percent of the subsidy provided by the central government to each municipality for the promotion of solar energy. The remaining cost for the project—installations of solar-powered street lights—will be borne by the respective municipalities and consumers groups there. A total of 8,757 users groups have been formed in 96 municipalities to implement the project. 

The Alternative Energy Promotion Centre (AEPC), the authority responsible for promotion and development of renewable and alternative energy technologies in the country, has already provided up to 60 percent subsidy to municipalities to install such lights. In 2014, the Kathmandu Metropolitan City in technical support from the AEPC installed 600 solar lights at Durbarmarg. Mukesh Ghi-mire, programme manager, solar component at the AEPC, said the centre had reached an agreement with 50 municipalities, including Pokhara Sub-Metropolitan City, for installing solar street lights. 

“Our programme was implemented before MoFALD came up with theirs. We need to make sure that the programme is not duplicated,” he added. 

Published: 08-06-2016 08:11

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