Cochin International Airport (CIAL) marks an airport of many firsts: A pioneer in PPP model, and the first airport to build a rehabilitation package for evictees, CIAL is now introducing itself as India’s first green airport that shall operate on solar energy later this month.
45 acres near the cargo complex of the airport are playing host to photovoltaic (PV) panels that shall provide 50,000 – 60,000 units of electricity per day to the airport for its operational functions, making CIAL ‘absolutely power neutral’ according to a report in PTI.
Airport Managing Director VJ Kurien also revealed in the interview that Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy would be inaugurating the giant green project on August 18. “The setting up of the project has enabled the company to produce 18 million units of power annually, which is adequate to feed 10,000 homes for one year,” he said in an interview with Hindu Business Line, adding that KSEB has given permission for banking the energy produced.
The 12MWp solar project that has cost Rs62 crore to implement, took 6 months to complete. However the initiative to invest in solar power commenced in March 2013, when a 100kWP solar PV plant was installed on the rooftop of the Arrival Terminal block. This was followed by the installation of a 1MWp solar plant (partly on the rooftop, and partly on the ground) in the Aircraft Maintenance Hangar facility: both these plants have saved over 550 MT (metric tonnes) of carbon dioxide emission.
(With inputs from PTI)