Chennai

SOWA turns to the sun to power common facilities

Today, the energy conservation initiative of Sarvam Apartments Owners Welfare Association (SOWA), a residents’ forum at SS Sarvam, a gated community with 203 flats, on 200-Feet Pallavaram-Thoraipakkam Radial Road in Pallikaranai, is completing one year.

SOWA installed a solar power plant with a capacity of 10KW on September 1, 2018 at the apartment complex. It is meant to take care of the power needs of the common facilities at the gated community such as the the gym, theatre, swimming pool and community hall. These facilities were billed under commercial tariff and therefore, eating into the funds of SOWA. Therefore, to cut down on electricity bills, SOWA decided to go solar for running the aforementioned facilities.

“Availing a subsidy under Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission, we installed the system at a cost of ₹4.75 lakh. Thirty-six panels have been installed on the 14th floor, that is the terrace. After receiving a green signal from the Tamil Nadu Energy Development Agency (TEDA), the plant was made operational. The panels have been kept over the gazebos, so that the walking space on the terrace is not compromised. We also use TEDA’s app to track the energy generated every day. On Sunny days, around 40 to 50 units of power is generated. After we started using solar energy, we have been saving around ₹.10,000 every month. Besides, there is no maintenance cost,” says B. Vijayalakshmi, advisory committee member of SOWA.

SOWA expresses its interest in guiding other gated communities that want to switch over to solar energy. The Association can be reached at 044-4952 1397.

Article source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/sowa-turns-to-the-sun-to-power-common-facilities/article29308983.ece

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