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Solar Energy – Empowering the World

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By Sonali Wadhwa

Mahatma Gandhi quoted rightly ‘Earth has enough for a man’s needs but not for man’s greed!!’. We all agree on this quote, don’t we? But do we really realize its importance in real life and try to make use of the message conveyed by this quote? Now coming to the topic of our discussion, let’s talk about the most common renewable source of energy i.e. the solar energy. Solar energy has always been the most easily available and viable source of energy.  As history tells us, it was the most prevailing and widely used form of energy in ancient times, making use of a very abundant resource, the sunlight. You all must perceive the sunlight as a source of vitamin D, and gaining this vitamin while walking down the roads commuting every day from one place to another and you must be feeling that it is the right use of sunlight.

Yes, dear readers, you all are not wrong if you feel this way but the intelligent minds of this era have actually introduced many efficient and incredible ways of utilizing this source of energy for more useful means. Harnessing the sunlight to produce heat and electricity is found out to be quite a logical and feasible idea of best utilizing the natural resources thereby substantially reducing the human dependence on artificial resources which resort to high costs and make the pollution levels reach their peak. Also, Solar energy based projects require less of maintenance and emit clean power with the tied benefit of longer life of solar energy conversion equipments.

  • Studies of Hart research survey showed that :
  • Ø 92% people strongly supported the idea of using solar energy in the United States of America.
  • Ø 85% people are in favor of utilizing solar energy while 60% strongly favor this concept.
  • Ø 78% think that government should support progress of solar energy projects with incentives.

Considering all the beneficial aspects of utilizing the renewable resources, people have indeed started implementing this very idea since quite a long time now. There’s been a remarkable progress observed in the implementation of this concept since its inception, in a large number of nations including India. Let us look at some of the most successful solar projects in India:

  • LADAKH :  Solar Power At Campus

         Region of Ladakh is blessed to have the most precious resource of nature, i.e. the sunlight, which caters to its need of a scheme to fight with its chilling climate of all times. With this very blessing, it is forced to endure a boon, the lack of rains in this region hedges the growth of trees and fire wood which further creates a soaring need of all time abundantly available source to produce heat which is appropriately catered by the solar energy produced by the ever-shining sunlight descending all of its covered area all day long. Student’s Educational and Cultural Movement of Ladakh (SECMOL), in the year 1994 made a huge effort to utilize the solar energy to make the campus at Phey Self sufficient and self reliant in the times of steepest fall in the mercury level (-25°C). The efforts include the setting up of solar cookers for using in the kitchens and solar water heaters for bathing purposes. Also all the electrical and pumping needs are met using the wisely created solar electricity. As we all are aware about the concept of green houses which trap the sunlight to use it for the maximum time, likewise SECMOL introduced a way of storing the

heat of sunlight using a Passive Solar Design. This structure neither requires the burning of firewood or gas consequently nor does it emit out CO2. Thus making their effort more reliable and favorable.

  • Signature Bridge At New Delhi

The recent solar energy based project which is currently in progress is estimated to reach its completion at the end of the year. Delhi Tourism and Transportation DevelopmentCorporation (DTTDC) have been handed over the task of building this bridge and looking into the feasibility of this proposal. A Senior Tourism official said “CPWD has previously undertaken two similar projects, Paryavaran Bhawan, Rashtrapati Bhawan. The concept is to produce electricity in the day and supply it to the grid. When power is required at night, we extract it from the grid. We will pay for only what we consume minus what we supply to the grid.”“I have requested Delhi Tourism to examine if we can use solar energy to light the bridge up and the ramps leading up to the structure,” tourism minister Somnath Bharti, said while looking into the construction work of the proposal. Under the bridge, it is proposed to build a marvelous and attractive tourist destination facilitated with amazing water sports to be developed under the second phase, these facilities are also planned to be build using solar energy. DTTDC has accomplished a pilot project in Dilli Haat and is now planning to make a couple more solar powered, as told by the officials. The construction of this Solar Power Signature Bridge will create an essential link between East and North Delhi replacing the bridge at Wazirabad. Now let’s have a look at the some of the solar projects across other parts of the world:

  •  Solar Circle Distributes Solar Cookers In Tanzania

A reputed NGO Solar Circle distributed 3000 solar cookers to the people of Tanzania using the barter system. Solar Circle realized from their solar cooker program Masasi, southern Tanzania that people are willing to work hard to earn a solar cooker. Lending a helping hand from the Swiss ADES Foundation, women received solar box cookers.

  • Solar Power Plant In China

 This New Year is planned to encounter a bag full of developments across the globe, one of them being the introduction of a new arrival in the global solar industry. Now it’s the turn of the most populous country, China to be one of the pearls of the string of countries executing solar power projects. The country is expected to welcome a 1000MW ground mounted solar power plant complex in a remote Chinese desert. Revived by the Chinese government’s projected solar goals for 2020, Todd Woody at Quartz remarked “this new solar project of China marks a significant progress in the solar global market.” Doug young at Renewable Energy World adds “Accomplishing such a grand objective will not be an easy task but big state-run companies are showing they will embark on a major new building spree to help Beijing reach the goal.”

As we are encountering more and more solar based projects across the Globe, we tend to expect that, now development of this world seems to be only few steps far while preserving the precious resources for the generation next. Being responsible and concerned citizens of the country, we all should put forth a handful of efforts to save and preserve the valuable resources of our mother earth and prevent them from being on the verge of extinction, take appropriate measures to use the alternative renewable resources for our ever increasing needs and inculcate the same sense of responsibility to the next generations in whose hands the future of the nation lies.

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