Odisha Plans Solar Trees That Can Withstand Wind Speed Upto 200km/h

Highlights :

  • OREDA plans to deploy solar trees, solar water kiosks, solar street lights and issued a tender to develop these in the state capital.
  • Special focus was given to make it more resilient to extreme weather events like cyclones.
Odisha Plans Solar Trees That Can Withstand Wind Speed Upto 200km/h

The Odisha Renewable Energy Development Agency (OREDA) has now planned to boost the penetration of decentralized renewable energy (DRE) systems in the state capital of Bhubaneswar. The coastal state, known for recurrent cyclones, has made special provisions to ensure extreme weather event-resilient solar structures and uninterrupted power supplies. 

The state has already witnessed the expansion of solar trees and solar-powered water kiosks in the solar city of Konark in Puri district. OREDA has now planned to replicate the same model in Bhubaneswar, too. Bhubaneswar is another proposed solar city of Odisha. To deploy several DRE solutions in the state capital, OREDA has floated a tender. The last date to submit the hard copies of the tender is March 4. 

As per the plan, OREDA wants to deploy 24 solar water kiosks, 22 solar trees and 88 solar street lights under this tender. This comes at a time when the state government has put a thrust on boosting the penetration of solar energy in the city and has plans to take a load off of fossil fuels in a phased manner. The tender specifically talked about installing solar trees that can withstand wind speeds upto 200 kms/hour. 

“By 2026, Bhubaneswar aimed to source 20% of its energy needs from renewable resources, with plans to increase this to 50% by 2030. This comprehensive plan included installing rooftop solar panels across various sectors—residential, government, institutional, commercial, and industrial—and solarizing streetlights and other public infrastructure,” OREDA said.

While OREDA will undertake the project, it will be supported by the Tata Power Central Odisha Distribution Ltd (TPCODL). TPCODL is the local discom in Bhubaneswar. Giz and Ernst & Young have already conducted the surveys, gathered data, and prepared a detailed project proposal for this project. 

Why Bhubaneswar needs a climate-resilient power structure? 

Odisha lies close to the Bay of Bengal and has witnessed several cyclones in the past. In May 2019, for example, cyclone Fani made its landfall in Puri, around 65 km away from Bhubaneswar. Due to the severity, several electricity polls, telecom towers, and other infrastructures in Puri and even in Bhubaneswar were badly damaged. This led to month-long blackouts in the regions.

After a spree of cyclones, Odisha has been focussing on creating more climate-resilient infrastructure, including in the electricity segment, to avert the damage these cyclones can cause to the power systems. 

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