Originally posted in The Daily Star on 16 January 2022
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid has said the government is exploring options like rooftop and floating solar power plants as alternatives to land-based ones due to scarcity of land.
He said it is not possible to set up land-based large scale solar plants as land is being used for agriculture and other necessary purposes.
The state minister made the remarks while presiding over the virtually held “Member Interventions” session of the 12th assembly of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) last evening.
Stressing the need for international cooperation to address the global energy challenges in a credible manner, he said regional and sub-regional cooperation are also essential in this regard.
Nasrul Hamid mentioned that Bangladesh has been making all-out efforts with limited resources to promote renewable energy.
“Over 2 crore people of the country have been brought under electricity facilities through setting up over 60 lakh solar home systems,” he added.
Moreover, people of the remote areas are being provided electricity through installing 26 solar mini-grids while 2000 diesel-run irrigation pumps were converted into solar-run pumps to reduce the use of liquid fuels.
Nasrul said currently the country is generating 650 MW electricity from solar energy while eight grid-tied solar parks, having 231 MW capacity, were set up across the country.
He said the government has introduced the net metering system to encourage rooftop solar panels while initiatives have been taken to use other sources of renewable energy like wind and waste to generate electricity.
Projects were undertaken to generate 245 MW of electricity from wind while Dhaka North City Corporation signed a contract to set up a 42.5 MW waste-to-energy plant.
The conference were attended by representatives from Zimbabwe, Colombia, India, United States, El Salvador, Belgium, Norway, Uruguay, Canada, Indonesia, Singapore, Greece, Spain, China, Japan, Switzerland, Croatia, Turkmenistan, Serbia, Germany, France, Italy, San Marino and Saudi Arabia.