Indian Railways is planning to further boost its efforts to use solar power and improve energy efficiency and has signed several agreements to this end.
The Indian Railways has signed memoranda of understanding with various ministries and government departments to boost solar power generation, energy conservation, and energy efficiency.
Together with the Ministry of New & Renewable Energy, Indian Railways will set up renewable energy, especially solar power, projects. The solar power projects are expected to include rooftop projects, utility-scale projects, solar water heating systems, as well as solar street lighting systems.
The Ministry of Railways already announced earlier this year that it would set up 1 gigawatts of solar power capacity over the next 5 years. The solar power projects are expected to significantly reduce the financial burden on Indian Railways, which pay huge power bills across the country. Indian Railways pays about $2 billion every year to purchase electricity.
Indian Railways has also signed agreements with the Ministry of Power and the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) to set up energy efficiency projects with respect to electricity supply. The Ministry of Power is expected to provide services for setting up transmission lines and set up smart grids. BEE is expected to hold workshops to impart technical know-how to Railway employees and engineers to improve energy efficiency.
Another agreement was signed by Railway Energy Management Company Limited with Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) to implement energy conservation projects. As per the agreement,EESSL will help Indian Railways assess energy conservation potential and finalise technical specification of various energy efficiency equipment, including LED lights, air conditioners, ceiling fans, water pumps, automatic power factor correction panels, and compressors.