- 10% Quota for general category
- NITI Aayog proposes all India Judicial Service Examination
- CAG Report on government spending
- Need for Citizenship (Amendment) Bill
- Clause 6 of Assam accord : indepth analysis
- Collegium system for appointment of judges
- Fear of Executive Courts
- Tamilnadu Reservation Policy
Governance & Social Justice
- Bhasha Sangam Program : Celebration of Linguistic Diversity
- Cabinet approves revision in list of scheduled tribes of Arunachal Pradesh
- Does India need a coal commission?
- Concerns in Ayushman Bharat
- Depression at workplaces : A major health issue in India
- How to bridge Gender gap in India : Mckinsey Global Institute Report
- Government plans to rename Indian Forest Service
- IGOT Program for Competent Civil Services
- Indian Medical Council Amendment Bill 2018
- National Commission for Indian Systems of Medicine and Homoeopathy
- Government bats for National Medical Devices Promotion Council
- Parental consent for vaccination
- India Signs Agreement with OECD for PISA 2021
- Kerala’s wall of resistance
- Should an IAS officer use Social Media?
- Social media addiction
- Legal Status for SSC
- Tripal Talaq Bill 2018
- Web Wonder Women Campaign by Ministry of WCD
- West Bengal Leaves Ayushman Bharat : In-depth Analysis
- Why Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank Is Important For India
- What Is The Asia Reassurance Initiative Act
- E-Passport for Indians
- What Is G-77
- Failed Coup In Gabon
- Bagladesh Election
- Powering South Asian Integration
- ISRO’S New Station In Bhutan
- Kenya Replace Pictures Of Leaders on Coins With Animal
- Macedonia Name Change
- Why Norway Is Important For India
- Why India Need Membership Of NSG
- Pakistan Declared A Hindu Temple A Heritage Site
- Raisina Dialogue 2019
- India’s Republic Day Guest
- India To Take Over Sittwe Port Operation In Myanmar
- U.S. Mexico Border
- US Government Shutdown
- US Venezuela Crisis
- What is Angel Investment?
- Byorung Bridge
- India’s Airport Privatization Plan
- Rationalisation of GST Rates
- 1st Advance Estimates of Economic Growth by CSO
- Democracy Index 2018
- E-DRISHTI Software by Ministry of Railways
- What is GAFA tax
- Ganga Expressway to be Built in UP
- Green-Ag Project launched by India with UN FAO
- Issue of Tax Evasion under GST
- Improvements under GST Regime
- ICAT Certification for Automobilies
- What is Indian Bridge management System?
- Draft Information Technology Amendmenet Rules 2018
- Jamrani multipurpose DAM Project
- What is KALIA Scheme?
- MANDAL DAM
- Mega Merger!
- MSP for minor forest produce
- NITI Aayog suggestions on farm Economy
- India’s first vertical-lift Bridge
- Paradip Hyderabad pipeline
- Measures to address issues in Sugar industry
- Capital infusion in PSBs
- Renukaji dam
- PM Modi inaugrates Rice Research Institute
- Section 74 of the insolvency and Bankruptcy Code
- Social & Environmental Cost of Building dams
- Solar feeder Maharashtra model
- RBI Tokenisation
- Sikkim-Universal basic income
- Global Risks Report 2019
Science & Technology
- Why Beech Trees Dying
- Beat Plastic Pollution Resolve by India
- Why USA Is Killings California Sea Lions
- Carbon Tax
- China’s War On Particulate Air Pollution Is Causing More Serve Ozone Pollution
- CITES Washington Convention
- Coastal Regulation Zone
- Melting Ice Sheets And Release Of methane
- National Clean Air Programme Feature &Critical Analysis
- Oceans Are Heating Up 40% Faster Than Previous Estimates
- Revival Of Iran’s Lake Urmia
- India submitted sixth national report to Convention on Biological Diversity
- How Wild Fire Affect crop and vegetation Production
- NITI Aayog’s SDG Index
Spice of the Month
- GS 3 || Economy || Agriculture || Primary Inputs (Seeds, Irrigation, Fertilizers, Pesticides)
Why in News?
- Maharashtra govt. has extended the agricultural solar feeder scheme to the full state after its pilot implementation at Ralegan Siddhi (Ahmednagar) and Kolambi (Yawatmal).
- Under this program, the farmers are supplied power during the day with the help of solar generation.
Stance of Agriculture in Power
- Ranging from 25% to 33% of the consumption, agriculture is the biggest consumer of power in many states in India.
- Since 1970, agriculture in many States is either at low rates or free for agriculture.
- Access to groundwater depends on affordable power supply.
- Around 65% in India uses groundwater pumping, powered by either electric pumps or diesel pumps, but majority of them are electric pumps.
Plights of the Electricity in Agriculture
- Majority of India has unmetered supply because of several states’ government provisions of subsidy or free endowments.
- Lower tariffs and subsidies led to the losses to discoms.
- Cross-Subsidy compensated this loss of the disoms and the remaining through direct subsidy from the State governments. Because in earlier time, since it got a moniker of loss sector, agriculture often gets poor quality supply which results in frequent pump burn-outs and power failures.
- Getting new connections and restoring supply take lots of time.
- Further, the supply is unreliable and often available during late nights.
- Electricity demand for agriculture is expected to double in the next 10 years and as the average cost of supply keeps increasing, the problem of agriculture subsidies will become worse.
Maharashtra Solar Feeder Scheme
- It is a 1-10 MW range solar power plant, which is interconnected with the 33/11 kV sub-stations.
- It will provide low cost electricity from solar, at Rs. 2.75-3/unit and at a fixed price contract for 25 years.
- 1 MW solar plant can support around 350, 5 hp pumps which requires around 5 acres of land.
- Also, Pumps need not be changed and farmers do not have to take responsibility of installation and operation.
- Reliable day-time electricity for 8-10 hours between 8 am and 6 pm.
- Due to inter-connection within the feeder and solar supply, power will always be balanced in supply.
- If pumping demand is low, maybe during rains, excess solar electricity will be given back to the discom.
- Selected projects will be through a competitive-bidding process and the entire electricity would be bought by the discom through a 25-year contract.
- The discom would continue to distribute the electricity to farmers on concerned feeders.
- It will drastically increase its solar procurement to achieve the national objective of increasing the use of solar power.
- Central govt. has also proposed the scheme KUSUM, with a 10,000 MW target in the same pipeline of the solar feeding.
Cure to the Problem
- Reliable, adequate day-time electricity supply heading towards a gradual increase in the mutual trust between the discoms and the farmer.
- No capital subsidy from the government.
- No new large transmission lines
- Deployment is feasible and generation also qualifies for Solar RPO of the participating discom.
- Employment generation in order to install and maintain the plants for the local youths.
- Cost of supplying power from the state discom is almost Rs. 5/unit with a rise each year, the price for solar power is about Rs. 3/unit, fixed for 25 years.
- Saving of about Rs. 2/unit translates to an annual saving of Rs. 10,000/five hp pump. A normal feeder with 500 pumps, this would save Rs. 4.5 crore (in net present value terms) over 20 years.