Saudi firm, BPDB sign deal to set up 1000MW solar power plant in Bangladesh
Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power has signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the state-owned Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB) to set up a 1000MW solar power plant in Bangladesh. Welcoming the initiative, State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid said that the investment and technological assistance from Saudi Arabia’s ACWA will help Bangladesh achieve its clean energy by 2041 goal. He said Bangladesh has been promoting renewable energy in various ways. Read more: Govt positive about Singapore company's 400MW Matarbari solar power plant proposal: Nasrul “The government has been working in a coordinated manner to promote renewable energy. State-owned Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA) is providing necessary technological support and consultations,” he said at the contract signing ceremony held at Biduyt Bhaban in Dhaka on Monday (November 28, 2022). BPDB Board Secretary Mohammad Selim Reza and ACWA Power Business Development Department’s Executive Director Ayad Al Amri signed the MoU on behalf of their respective sides. As per the non-binding MoU, Saudi ACWA Power will provide technological and financial support while BPDB will extend its administrative support for the 1000MW solar power project. Read more: British High Commission Dhaka turns to renewable energy through solar panels With BPDB chairman Md Mahbubur Rahman in the chair, the MoU signing event between BPDB and Saudi Arabia’s ACWA Power was also addressed by power secretary Habuibur Rahman and Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Bangladesh Essa Bin Yousef Al Duhailan.
Govt working to revise renewable energy policy: Recent primary fuels crisis a reason
The government is working to revise the “Renewable Energy Policy of Bangladesh 2008” to make it more effective in the changed energy and power sector scenario. Official sources said, Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda), the focal organization under Power Division of the government, has already appointed a consultant. The consultant – Development Technical Consultants Pvt. Ltd (DTCL) – has started reviewing the existing renewable energy policy, REPB-2008, and organize focus group discussion for stakeholders. Read:Govt deliberately pursuing import-dependent energy policy: Speakers According to renewable energy industry insiders, the first meeting of the stakeholders will be held on September 20 in Sreda office. The consultant firm convened the meeting on behalf of Sreda where it will make a presentation on the existing policy and seek opinions of the stakeholders to update it in a national and global changed scenario, said an industry insider. He said the initiative have come from the government as a follow-up of its statements to 26th meeting of the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), held in Scotland, United Kingdom, from October 31 to November 13 2021. Read: Experts for reining in energy corruption, exploration of alternative sources In the COP26 meeting, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in written statement said: “We are also working for a more sustainable energy mix. We hope to have 40% of our energy from renewable sources by 2041”. She also said, “Recently we submitted an ambitious and updated NDC (Nationally Determined Contributions) to the UNFCCC. We have cancelled 10 coal-based power plants worth 12 billion dollars of foreign investment. Currently, as per Sreda statistics, the country generates about 911 MW (solar 677 MW, hydro 230 MW and others 2 MW) while the total power generation is more than 25,000 MW which shows the renewable energy’s share is less than 4 percent. Read: Patience can help overcome crisis in energy sector: Nasrul The recent crisis in primary fuels is another reason behind the move, said a Sreda official. State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid, recently at a function, said that among other options of renewable energy, solar power has huge potential for Bangladesh. But since it requires substantial land allocation, it needs an innovative solution. He also said Bangladesh is now promoting the options of rooftop and floating solar panels and net metering system has been introduced to popularise the use of solar power. Read Huawei Technologies intends to support RMG industry in renewable energy “There is a good opportunity to work on wind power as well,” he said, adding that wind mapping has been completed for 9 potential sites and feasibility will be conducted on the potential for offshore wind power. Private investors in renewable energy sector welcomed the Sreda initiative to review the renewable energy policy and bring necessary amendments to promote non-conventional energy sources. Dipal Barua, president of Bangladesh Solar and Renewable Energy Association (BSREA), termed the initiative “time befitting.” Read TEI GET to promote renewable energy in Bangladesh He said despite a huge potential, the country could not utilize it due to lack of proper action plan. Munawar Moin, Vice President of BSREA and President of Solar Module Manufacturers Association of Bangladesh (SMAB), said the government should introduce a policy under which the local solar industry could utilise their full potentials. Cost of solar energy decreased substantially and has created a huge scope for investment in mega projects, he said. Read Green Economy in Bangladesh: Prospects and Challenges
25% electricity from renewables by 2030: SREDA proposes, GOB disposes?
Though the country’s target to generate 10 percent electricity from clean and renewable sources by 2020 was not achieved, a fresh target for 25 percent renewable energy is going to be proposed for 2030. According to official sources, the Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA) will propose the new target, to be incorporated in the proposed Integrated Energy and Power Master Plan (IEPMP). “We’re going to propose a new target to generate 10,000 MW electricity from renewable sources by 2030, when total power generation will be 40,000 MW,” SREDA chairman Mohammad Aladdin told UNB recently. READ: Bangladesh trying to import 500 MW hydro-electricity from Nepal: Power Cell DG Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources (MPEMR) recently started a process to formulate the IEPMP with the technical and financial support of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). Tokyo-based Institute of Energy Economics, Japan (IEEJ), has been assigned to adopt the plan for both power and energy sectors. Previously, separate master plans were made for each sector. But for the first time, an integrated plan is being designed for the two sectors. Alauddin, also an additional secretary of the Power Division under the MPEMR, informed that Sreda had an introductory session with the JICA team in a consultative discussion. “But now we’re working out on the issue to give a concrete proposal on renewable energy’s stake in the proposed IEPMP,” he told UNB. As per the Sreda proposal, wind power will play a major role in future renewable energy generation in the country and half of the target will be met by this source of green energy. “Exploiting the new and efficient technology, we’re now planning to set up a good number of wind power plants by 2030,” he said, adding a recent study found wind speed at 6 metres per second at higher hub height. Currently wind is contributing less than 3 MW though, according to SREDA's own numbers. For the other half of that 10,000 MW, the SREDA chairman listed 1,000 MW power from rooftop solar, 1000 MW from floating solar, 1000 MW from solar park and 2,400 MW from nuclear power are expected by 2030, he added.
Sreda organises 'Bikiron' to raise awareness about energy efficiency
Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (SREDA) organised a national competition titled 'Bikiron' to create awareness among university students about energy efficiency and conservation and encourage them in conceiving innovative ideas. The closing ceremony of Bikiron was held on Thursday.SREDA organised the completion in cooperation with Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Programme(REEEP II). The event with Mohammad Alauddin, Chairman, SREDA in the chair, was also addressed by Dr. Ahmad Kaikaus, Principal Secretary to Prime Minister, as chief guest while Habibur Rahman, Secretary, Power Division, Satyajit Karmaker, Chairman (Secretary), Bangladesh Energy & Power Research Council (BEPRC) and Johannes Schneider, Head of Development Cooperation, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, Dhaka, spoke on the occasion as special guests. Read: Sreda launches help desk to provide one-stop service on rooftop solar The Deutsche Gesellschaft fürInternationaleZusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH is implementing REEEP II on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. SREDA has been taking various initiatives to spread awareness on energy efficiency and conservation. As part of Mujib Borsho celebrations, SREDA launched a nationwide awareness campaign titled "ShasroyeJalani, Shomriddho agami (save energy, brighten your future)". Bikiron was organised as part of this campaign. Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Minister Nasrul Hamid inaugurated the competition on September 9. Innovative solutions were invited through www.bikiron.orgfrom university students on three categories: increasing energy efficiency in residential and commercial buildings (Energy-Smart Buildings), improving quality of life using sustainable energy technology in rural areas (Energy-Smart Villages), and making children and adolescents aware of energy conservation (Energy-Smart Children). The teams had the opportunity to further strengthen their ideas with the help of renowned experts from the sustainable energy sector. Three webinars for each category were organised for their capacity development. Read:Sreda, BGMEA sign deal for rooftop solar power promotion in RMG sector More than 100 teams from universities across Bangladesh submitted their ideas. After a rigorous screening process, 23 teams made it to the final round. On November 11, they presented the ideas to a jury board comprised of public and private sector experts and academia. The winners were announced on the same day. The winning teams pitched their ideas to the audience during the event. From a cooling solution for coastal fisherman, to an innovative metering system for buildings, and a proposal for creating an energy toolkit for children – the ideas were diverse and received appreciation of the audience. The ten winning teams of the competition were handed over awards and certificates during the event.The closing ceremony was organised to recognize these young aspiring innovators, and also to provide them guidance in their entrepreneurial journey. Sonia Bashir Kabir, Founder, SBK Tech Ventures and Koen Everaert, Team Leader, Green Inclusive Development and Social Protection, EU Delegation spoke about the challenges and opportunities in taking a sustainable energy idea from ideation to implementation from a Bangladeshi and Global Perspective respectively.
Sreda launches help desk to provide one-stop service on rooftop solar
Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda) on Thursday formally launched a national solar help desk (NSHD) at its office to meet requirements of consumers and investors in renewable energy sector. “The NHSD will serve as a common platform to support the implementation of rooftop solar projects under net metering. Any interested person can access pertinent information on eligibility criteria, application process, financing options, and implementation process, and technical specifications of rooftop solar system, among others”, said a press release of the Sreda. Also read: Sreda, BGMEA sign deal for rooftop solar power promotion in RMG sector All the information will be available in a structured manner in the NSHD web portal – shd.sreda.gov.bd., it said, adding, there will also be options for obtaining service through virtual meetings or a physical visit at the Help Desk at the Sreda office, located in IEB Building, Ramna. State Minister of the Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid attended the event virtually as the chief guest while Power Secretary Md. Habibur Rahman, Secretary, Chairman of Bangladesh Energy and Power Research Council (BEPRC) Satyajit Karmaker, Head of Development Cooperation of German Embassy Caren Blume were also present on the inauguration ceremony as special guests. Read Solar Home System: IDCOL partners seek govt intervention in loan write-off issue The help desk has been established in cooperation with GIZ Bangladesh. SREDA is committed in its efforts to achieve the national target of renewable energy development. To realize this goal, SREDA has taken a number of initiatives including issuing a guideline for development of rooftop solar under net metering. Also read: Sreda, BCSIR to work together for developing hydrogen fuel The Net Metering guidelines enacted in 2018 has laid the foundation for implementing rooftop solar projects at industrial, commercial and residential facilities with 3 phase connection and thereby, allowing consumers to transport surplus electricity, after self-consumption, to the national grid.
Solar Home System: IDCOL partners seek govt intervention in loan write-off issue
Five largest partner organisations (POs) of state-owned IDCOL, who played a vital role in expanding the solar home system (SHS), are now seeking the government’s intervention to resolve the loan write-off issue. Otherwise, they say, they will be deprived of the benefit and face huge losses. Official sources said IDCOL recently forwarded a proposal to the Bangladesh Bank seeking a write-off approval of Tk 306.41 crore default loans for its 39 POs. Its 44 POs have about Tk 1,400 crore in default loans. Also read: Is solar power the solution to Bangladesh's growing energy ... They said these loans, provided by IDCOL, became default because of the government’s fast grid power expansion programme. “Grid electricity expanded to the off-grid areas that discouraged SHS consumers to pay back the loans they received from POs. Such unpaid loans finally made the POs defaulters in paying back the IDCOL,” said a top official of a firm involved in the renewable energy programme. IDCOL had distributed the loan after receiving funds from different donor agencies, including the World Bank. Read Govt rooftops can generate 2,000 MW of solar power, say experts According to World Bank’s latest data, an estimated $1,094.93 million was invested in the HSH project to provide electricity to about 20 million people — which means about $266 per household. Of the investment, 63 percent came from the World Bank, 14 percent from the Asian Development Bank and 12 percent from the Japan International Cooperation Agency. The entire fund was distributed by IDCOL as a soft loan which resulted in saving Bangladesh $1,852 million while providing clean energy since 2003, says a recent World Bank survey. Also read: Rooftop solar power: 'Net metering can ensure cheaper ... It said the project helped households gain $745 million, partner organisations $310 million and the IDCOL $379 million while the government's net benefit was $474 million, said the donor agency. Solar industry insiders said the SHS programme was launched by IDCOL in 2003. In the last 18 years, over 5.5 million solar home systems were installed. They said that there was a tripartite partnership to the financial model under which IDCOL provided about 70 percent of the total cost of installing the SHS as soft loans to the POs, while the remaining 30 percent was invested by the POs and the customers themselves. Read Green energy's share of power generation lagging far behind conventional sources
Sreda, BGMEA sign deal for rooftop solar power promotion in RMG sector
Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda) and Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) on Thursday signed a Memorandum of Understating (MOU) under which the state-owned agency will help garment industries to install rooftop solar power in order to transform them into green industries. Welcoming the agreement between the two private and public bodies, Prime Minister’s Energy Advisor Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury said the initiative will create some foots and grounds for promotion of renewable energy in the garment sector. Read: Rooftop solar power: ‘Net metering can ensure cheaper electricity for garment factories’ “This will open up the door for others to follow”, he told the agreement signing function joining it virtually. Sreda secretary Niaz Rahman and BGMEA Secretary Abdur Razzak signed the MOU on behalf of their respective sides while Sreda chairman Mohammad Alauddin and BGMEA president Rubana Huq, State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister Dr Ahmad Kaikaus addressed the function. As per the agreement, the Sreda and BGMEA will create coordination in raising awareness about renewable energy in the garment sector, pursue for central bank’s green funding and also investment from banking sector. Read: Rooftop solar: Power companies instructed to float net metering promotion plan Nasrul Hamid said the country’s industrial sector consumes nearly 48 percent of their total power generation and garment industries lead the sector by consuming 30 percent of total industrial load. If the garment industry pursues energy efficiency, it will reduce their 17.6 percent consumption, he added. Sreda chairman Mohammad Alauddin said there is huge scope for renewable energy promotion in garment sector. Read Green energy's share of power generation lagging far behind conventional sources
One out of 150 candidates was eligible to be energy auditor: Prof Haque
Only one out of 150 candidates fulfilled the eligibility criteria for being energy auditor, in an examination of Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda). Such experience was shared by BUET Prof Dr Mohammad Zahirul Haque at a webinar organised by Energy and Power magazine on Saturday. The exam was held by Sreda last year just before the outbreak of Covid-19 in the country to appoint independent energy auditors. Dr Haque said although most of the candidates were BUET students, they forgot how to calculate the efficiency in energy use. The virtual seminar, tiled “Energy Efficiency Opportunities in RMG & Textile Industry”, was also addressed, among others by Prime Minister’s Energy Advisor Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi Chowdhury, Sreda Chairman Mohammad Alauddin, President of Bangladesh Readymade Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA) Dr Rubana Huq, energy expert Prof Nurul Islam, former president of Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry Asif Ibrahim and Idcol’s chief financial officer Nazmul Haque. Energy and Power editor Mollah Amzad Hossain conducted the seminar. Dr Tawfiq-e-Elahi said the government entities should hear from the industry owners to remove their bottlenecks in pursuing their energy efficiency mechanism. “There should be proper coordination between Sreda, banks and industry owners so that the industry operators can easily avail the low-cost loans for making their industries energy efficient. Mohammad Alauddin said setting up Sreda itself reflects the government’s good intention to promote energy efficiency. He said Sreda has so far conducted energy auditing at 12 industries in the country and their results will be released soon through a publication. Sreda member Farzana Momtaz, who made the keynote presentation, said the readymade garment sector can reduce their energy cost by 16 percent if they pursue energy efficiency mechanism. It will reduce their cost and they will derive most benefits from global market being treated as green industry owners, she said. Rubana said although there is no adequate government support for energy efficiency, the garment sector itself made progress turning many of their industries into efficient. Some seven green factories, out of 10 which were recognised as most energy efficient across the globe, belong to Bangladesh, she said adding that so far 130 industries were converted into green industries and some 500 are now in the line of turning into efficient industries. She said the government incentives for such initiative are very inadequate. Prof Nurul Islam said the successful case industries of the energy efficiency should be published so that others can be encouraged to see the success. Asif Ibrahim said the government has to remove bureaucratic bottlenecks in providing support to the industries to make them efficient.
Nasrul urges RMG owners: Go solar for low cost, tax break
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid has urged the country’s garment industry owners to set up rooftop solar system under net metering policy to take advantage of green energy. “If you set up solar power plant for your own consumption using your industry rooftop, it could be a good investment which not only reduces your power bill, but also benefits you to get a credit of green industry”, he told industry owners while addressing a virtual workshop on Tuesday. Also read: Rooftop solar: Power companies instructed to float net metering promotion plan Sustainable and Renewable Energy Development Authority (Sreda) organized the workshop titled: “Scaling Up Net Metered Rooftop Solar on Knitwear Industry” with its chairman Mohammad Alauddin in the chair. The workshop was also addressed by Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA) vice president Mohammad Hatem, Bangladesh Energy and Power Research Council (BEPRC) chairman Zakia Sultana. Also read: Rooftop solar power: ‘Net metering can ensure cheaper electricity for garment factories’ The government introduced net metering policy under which a consumer can sell his unconsumed or additional electricity generated from rooftop solar to the national grid. The State Minister said that use of efficient technology and green energy will help promote sustainable growth the industry. Also read: Green energy in Bangladesh: Govt moves to save solar mini-grids “It will help our appeal industries compete to the global market at lower production cost”, he said. Nasrul Hamid said the government has initiated a move to reach electricity to off-grid areas through solar home system, mini-solar power grid and submarine cables. Also read: Govt rooftops can generate 2,000 MW of solar power, say experts He said the government set a target to generate 10 percent of electricity from renewable energy sources. To achieve this target, he said, the government has taken different steps including a net metering system to promote the use of rooftop solar power.
Renewable energy: Government urged to allocate specific budget, set target
The government needs to allocate a specific budget, set a target and formulate policy guideline to promote renewable energy in the country, experts and stakeholders said Saturday in a webinar.