New Delhi: A Parliamentary panel has requested the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) to restart one megawatt (MW) solar thermal power plant at the National Institute of Solar Energy, claiming that the project resulted in “infructuous expenditure.
The Public Accounts Committee noted in its 61st report on ‘Non-Utilisation of Solar Thermal Plant,’ which was submitted in Parliament on Wednesday, that this project resulted in an infructuous expenditure of Rs 46.26 crore of public money.
” The National Institute of Solar Energy (NISE) planned, constructed, and commissioned a grid-interactive solar thermal power plant with a capacity of 1 MWe at Direct Normal Irradiance (DNI) radiation of 600 W/m2 in partnership with IIT, Bombay, and other consortium partners. The plant is currently inoperable.
In its 61st report on ‘Non-Utilisation of Solar Thermal Plant’, presented in Parliament on Wednesday, Public Accounts Committee stated that this project led to an infructuous expenditure of Rs 46.26 crore of public money.
The panel stated that the project’s feasibility was honestly and thoroughly reviewed and that the loss might have been averted.
“At least now, the MNRE should explore the possibility of reviving the plant at the earliest and make it functional,” it recommended.
The committee stated that three additional similar projects (two in Rajasthan and one in Andhra Pradesh) have been established and are operating satisfactorily as a result of studying the technology of this plant.
It believes that if the technologies used can inspire other private enterprises, the plant’s rebirth is a distinct possibility.
Instead of using this plant as a mere demonstration project for R&D, the panel advised that efforts be made to examine the technology utilized in other facilities of a similar sort that are running successfully in order to revive the facility.