Bescom Backs Plea For Multiple Solar Units On Apartment Roofs | Bengaluru News – Times of India

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Bengaluru: Determined to reduce the load on the state power grid and cut down on surging monthly electricity bills, apartments have collectively demanded that Bangalore Electricity Supply Company (Bescom) permit them to set up ‘multiple rooftop’ solar installations on one building premises.
Responding positively to the demand that would subsequently result in surplus power, Bescom has told Bangalore Apartments’ Federation (BAF) that it will seek guidance from Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC).The BAF and RWAs could also approach KERC for detailed guidelines, it said.
Faced with technical hurdles, apartment complexes were unable to install multiple solar installations even though they had ample facilities and space to do so. “Currently, the apartments or resident welfare associations (RWAs) can install solar rooftop only on the even roof-top as per the definition. Even if RWAs want to extend the panels beyond the roof on to adjoining structures or elongated platforms on the roof, Bescom will not permit multiple installations,” explained a member of an apartment RWA.
Vikram Rai, president, BAF, said: “Usually, other than the main roof, apartment complexes have multiple structures such as community hall building, gym building or parking space with a wider roof. Despite such a wider roof area, multiple solar roof-top installations were not permitted. It was a small technical issue and we petitioned Bescom to resolve the same and help us extend the installation of solar panels beyond the main roof as this would only result in increased generation of power and reduced burden on the grid during peak load hours.”
Acknowledging the demand, Mahantesh Bilagi, managing director, Bescom said they have discussed the issue at length. “We are positive on the suggestion. But any changes in rules, beyond the definition of rooftop as enumerated, require permission and approval by Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (KERC). We have informed the apartments that they will seek guidance from the KERC and in the meantime, BAF and RWAs can also approach the KERC for detailed guidelines.”
Yet another member of an RWA from Bengaluru North said, “The more such net metering units, the more will be the benefit for Bescom and the energy department. This will help reduce the peak-load demand which will impact the effective management of the grid. The more such solar installations on a building, the more energy can be added to the grid.”
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