New Delhi adapting to surging energy demand with clean technology

23 July 2012

NEW DELHI: Its national capital, New Delhi, is heading India's low carbon economy by making the adoption of LED lighting and electric vehicles cheaper and easier for consumers.

It has recently been announced that the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) is planning to install charging stations for electric vehicles (EVs) in 65 areas under the NDMC jurisdiction, a move which will increase consumer appeal for EVs.

This public-private partnership project, which is expected to be a benchmark for the future of EVs in India, will see the installation of charging stations near important landmarks, metro stations and hotels of the city.

The private company that successfully bids for this partnership will gain advertising rights on top of the earnings from charging.

Once the United Traffic and Transportation Infrastructure Planning and Engineering agency clear the proposal and a bidder is accepted, NDMC officials say the entire EV project will be completed in 36 months, with one prototype station installed in the first two months.

For light-emitting diode (LED) lighting, the story in New Delhi is equally optimistic. The Government is promoting LEDs in the city by considering tax breaks that will lower the cost of the low carbon lighting for consumers.

To avoid the higher upfront costs of installing LEDs, the Bombay Suburban BSES will sell the bulbs at a 50% discount.

New Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit said: "We would like to promote LED bulbs by granting some concession in value added tax (VAT). Further, the Government will shift from ordinary or CFL lighting to LED lighting for streets in the entire city, and also in all Government offices."

The decision was triggered by New Delhi’s power demand, which has more than doubled over the last 12 years, surging from 2,000 megawatts in 2000, to today’s 5,6000 megawatts.

Aditi Dass, Director of Technology Programs India, The Climate Group, commented on the Government’s two separate clean technology plans. She said: "The announcement of establishing EV charging stations in the national capital has to be seen as a very important development, more so at a time when there is a growing excitement in the automobile sector for the EV and hybrid policy. Proactive moves like this one -- as well as the move to mainstream LEDs with special incentives -- is extremely encouraging, and symbolic of the fact that the State Government in Delhi is extremely committed towards advancing the concept of a clean revolution.”

The Climate Group’s recently released report, Lighting the Clean Revolution: The rise of LEDs and what it means for cities, further backs New Delhi Government’s plans to offer tax breaks for LEDS. The report shared the results of our trials which covered 13 cities and 27 different LED products. The results demonstrated an average energy saving of 60% for LED units compared to existing lighting fixtures. They also showed that LEDs are more effective in terms of delivering light to where it should go, producing a better quality of light for users, and being remarkably durable.

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