Solar micro-grids supply 24h powerThree remote villages in Okhaldhunga and Khotang districts have just been switched on to round-the-clock power from nearby solar micro-grids.
Three remote villages in Okhaldhunga and Khotang districts have just been switched on to round-the-clock power from nearby solar micro-grids. The three solar micro-grids, with combined capacity of 35 kW, were installed in the communities of Harkapur in Okhaldhunga district, and Kaduwa and Chyasmitar in Khotang district, according to the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
“They will provide a 24-hour reliable electricity supply to around 540 people in 83 households and 25 local businesses,” the ADB said in a press statement.
The solar micro-grids and battery storage were built by Gham Power with local communities with a $100,000 (Rs10.75 million) grant from the ADB through its Energy for All Programme and other technical and financial assistance from the DOEN Foundation and NMB Bank in close collaboration with the Alternative Energy Promotion Centre.
“The solar micro-grids that we are piloting here provide a clean, cost-effective, local solution involving the private sector that will change the lives of these communities and serve as a model for other far-flung villages,” said Jiwan Acharya, senior energy specialist at the ADB.
Electricity costs for households are forecast at around $4 to $6 (Rs430 to Rs645) per month. Currently, households relying on kerosene for lighting alone can pay up to $10 (Rs1,075) a month. And by using solar power rather than fossil fuels, the project will avoid 41 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions every year, the multilateral donor said.
In addition to meeting household electricity needs, these micro-grids are expected to offer energy for productive uses, and create the opportunity for income generation activities. Local industries will now have power for their agro-processing grinding mills and dairy chillers.