Efforts are on to make renewable energy accessible for all in Jammu and Kashmir, the state’s Minister for Science and Technology Sajad Gani Lone said today.
“Government s endeavour is to harness the potential of science and technology as an instrument of socio-economic change and to shift dependence for our energy needs to renewable energy sources.
“The department aims to, through its endeavours, increase reach, use of renewable means by making it accessible, efficient so as to integrate its use in every household,” the minister said winding up discussions in the legislative assembly on demand for grants of the department under his charge.
For this, the department is working on multiple fronts by providing subsidised products consuming renewable energy including solar cooker, stoves, lamps, geysers and promotion of these gadgets by way of creating awareness among people.
Science and technology department has two important verticals — the Jammu and Kashmir Energy Development Agency (JAKEDA) and Science, Technology and Innovation Council (ST&IC).
Listing major achievements of JAKEDA, the minister said earlier the agency was mandated to execute hydel projects up to 2 MW only but with the government intervention, it is now enhanced to 10 MW.
With a view to provide more technical hands to JAKEDA and to make it a purely skilled manpower driven organisation, organisational restructuring has been done last year, he said, adding the new structure which is relevant and robust would be in place shortly.
The minister said the department is in the process of creating Renewable Energy Corporation which would catalyse the development of renewable energy resources besides providing easy access to capital which is the fundamental requirement for project development.
Elaborating on the development of solar sector in the state, the minister said JAKEDA has been allocated a target of 1150 MW of solar power by the Union Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, to be achieved by the end of 2022.
He said the department proposes to install about 50 MWs solar rooftops on government buildings during the next financial year for which the finance department has agreed to provide beneficiary share through a solar fund dedicated for the purpose.
While informing the house about the achievements of ST&IC, the minister said Rs 84.62 crore has been approved by the Union Ministry of Science and Technology for establishment of two Industrial Biotechnology Parks — one each in Kashmir and Jammu.
“These two biotechnology projects will be fully established and made operational in two years’ time period,” he said.
Later, the house passed the grants of Science and Technology department for the year 2018-19, amounting to Rs 739.80 crore.