Port operator APM Terminals has inaugurated a new three-phase project to use solar energy as electrical power for terminal operations at its facilities at Jawaharlal Nehru Port (JNP).
The solar panel project’s first phase, which is currently underway, included the installation and implementation of solar panels on the roofs of APMT Mumbai’s workshop and Central Gate Complex to capture and store energy from the sun.
The system is now fully operational and the conversion of collected sunlight into store electricity has already started. In the first phase of the initiative, roof-top solar panels are expected to generate electric power of up to 361,000 kilowatt hour (kWh) units per year.
The project’s second phase, which is expected to be completed in June 2016, is set to generate an additional 220,000 kWh units annually by installing solar panels on the roof tops of the ship-to-shore (STS) crane machine houses following trial testing.
The last phase of the clean power plan is expected to bring the installation of more panels to cover a wider surface area, leading to the generation of about 5m kWh units annually, which represents approximately 15% of APMT Mumbai’s total power requirement per year.
A spokesman from APMT told CM that the operator wants to pilot its Mumbai terminal “to learn best practices” before introducing solar power at more of its terminals around the world.
The terminal operator said in a statement that the solar energy project resulted from a feasibility study completed by the facility last year on the possibility to reduce traditional electrical power consumption by generating solar power.
According to APMT, India is the world’s fourth-largest producer and the fifth-largest consumer of electricity, and about 70% of the country’s electrical power is generated by burning fossil fuels.
Ravi Gaitonde, chief operating officer at APMT Mumbai, said in a statement: “The Mumbai Solar Panel Project reaffirms our commitment to green power and caring for the Indian environment.”
The operator said in a statement that accessibility to clean, carbon-free, renewable energy sources will hold an increasingly important role for ongoing economic growth as India’s population is expected to expand by an estimated 200m, which is approximately Brazil’s current population, over the next 15 years.