The Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA) has targeted to produce 3,100 MW of electricity from solar and wind resources by 2021.
The state-owned authority said the landmark project comprising one or more solar-based power plants with an aggregate capacity of up to 200 MW and wind-based 20 MW to 30 MW power plants is expected to be installed in the coastal belt in conformity with the recently declared government renewable energy policy.
"To meet our growing energy demand we are focusing on renewable energy sector as the capacity cost of installing a solar panel and wind turbine is declining day by day. We asked all of the six power generation companies in public sector to produce 600 MW of electricity from wind sources and 455 MW from solar energy," State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid told the daily Observer.
According to the policy the state-owned six power generation companies will produce 100 MW power from wind turbine and 455 MW from the solar panels by 2021.
The private sector will implement the remaining 2,045 MW solar and wind projects to be set up through IPP, joint-venture and under the Emergency Energy and Power Supply Special Act 2010, Power Division official said. The SREDA authority will be allow solicited and unsolicited proposals to fulfil its target, the official added.
According to SREDA the public sector will produce around 770 MW wind power and about 1,275 MW of solar power will be produce by the private players, the official said.
Presently solar power accounts for about 1 per cent of the energy mix.
Since the very beginning of the establishment the SREDA, it is dedicated to the enhancement of Renewable Energy use in power sector. There is a good scope for solar, wind, biomass, and micro/mini hydro power generation in Bangladesh but we need more research to do it, Nasrul said.
As per the government's ambitious plan to set up 25 solar parks, SREDA has identified 12 locations in various areas where such power projects can come up.
The SREDA and the Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) are jointly working on the issue to set up solar parks in four major and 10 small areas to produce 340 MW of electricity which could increase the total installed solar capacity nationwide to about more than 500 MW. At least 10 of the parks are likely to be set up over the next year, along with supporting infrastructures including transmission lines, the official added.
Launched as an initiative to explore the feasibility of a large scale solar project in Bangladesh, the government had already installed 3 million solar panels and is set to install 2.5 million within one and half years.
"Several small-scale projects are already operational or under development in rural areas, displacing diesel-based electricity generation. SREDA expects the government to define its renewable energy policy in the near future to include large-scale, grid-connected projects," it said.
SREDA is going to have solar parks installed like the 'Rental Power' or 'Quick Rental Power' under the emergency energy and power law to draw interest of the private investors, the official said.
The locations identified are in Karnaphuli riverside, Rangunia, Chittagong, the 40-45 MW solar park project adjacent to Bangabandhu Bridge, Tangail, and Sirajganj area, a 2-3 MW solar park project adjacent to Power Grid Company of Bangladesh (PGCB) grid sub-station compound, Ishwardi, and a 1-2 MW solar park project adjacent to the PGCB grid sub-station compound in Jhenidah.
The PDB has also made plans to implement solar park projects on an IPP/PPP basis in accordance with the roadmap of the Asian Development Bank's (ADB's) 500 MW Solar Power Mission.
"A solar park is a concentrated zone wherein the government will not provide any land but basic infrastructures for setting up of the plant as well as evacuation of power. Developers, on the other hand, will have to enter into power purchase agreements with distribution companies before setting up the plant," the official said.
BPDB has already implemented three solar projects in Juraichori Upazila, Barkal Upazila and Thanchi Upazila of Rangamati District.
In the fiscal year 2008-09, BPDB implemented another two solar electrification projects in Angoorpota and Dahagram Chit Mohol. A total of 1.06 kWp Solar PV Systems have been installed in Angoorpota and Dahagram Chit Mohol.
The potential of wind energy is limited to coastal areas, off-shore islands, riverbanks and other inland open areas with strong wind regime. In order to generate electricity from wind energy, BPDB installed 4x225 KW = 900 KW capacity grid connected wind plant at Muhuri Dam area of Sonagazi in Feni.
Another project of 1000 KW Wind Battery Hybrid Power Plant at Kutubdia Island was completed in 2008 which consists of 50 Wind Turbines of 20 KW capacity each. It planned to implement 50-200 MW Wind Power Project at Parky Beach area, Anawara in Chittagong on IPP basis.
Power Division and BPDB have primarily identified 22 potential sites for Wind Resource Mapping in Bangladesh. Wind monitoring stations will be installed at these sites for comprehensive Wind Resource Assessment (WRA). "We are also planning to expand on-shore Wind Power Plants along the coastline of coastal regions of Bangladesh." The official said.
The government has made an allocation of Tk 400 crore for the development of renewable energy project for this fiscal.