May 28, 2024

Representative photo: Bloomberg

Bhilai Steel Plant (BSP), the Chhattisgarh-based arm of the state-run Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL), will install the state’s first 15-megawatt (MW) floating solar project in its Maroda-1 reservoir to improve its carbon footprint. The steel major is undertaking various projects to reduce carbon emissions, conserve energy, and promote renewable energy.

“In a major step towards this, Bhilai Steel Plant has taken up the project of installation of a 15 MW capacity floating solar plant in its Maroda-1 reservoir,” a BSP spokesperson said. The project is being implemented through NTPC-SAIL Power Supply Company Limited (NSPCL), a 50:50 joint venture company of National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) and SAIL. The solar plant will be set up in Durg district.

The Maroda reservoir is spread across 2.1 square kilometers with a water storage capacity of 19 cubic milimetres (MM3). The water stored in the Maroda-I reservoir not only feeds the plant but also the township.

The spokesperson said the project was the first floating solar plant in Chhattisgarh. Total green power generation estimated from this plant is likely to be about 34.26 million units annually, which will be consumed by Bhilai Steel Plant as captive power. The project is expected to reduce the CO2 emission of BSP by 28,330 tonnes annually.

NTPC, the consultant for the project, floated the tender for the project in January this year. The tender process has been completed and the Engineering, Procurement, and Construction Contract (EPC) is likely to be awarded shortly, officials said, adding, the project is scheduled to be completed by next year.

The first solar project of NSPCL will open avenues of green energy portfolio for NSPCL while helping SAIL in green steel production.

Another solar power plant of 35 MW is also proposed by SAIL-Bhilai Steel Plant through NSPCL in the next phase, for which DPR has already been prepared and the tender process is likely to start soon.

First Published: May 12 2024 | 3:16 PM IST